For some people that is a bit of an oxymoron.
For the next 8 weeks you may find yourself participating (albeit somewhat begrudgingly) in meals, gift exchanges, parties and celebrations with let’s just say, ekhem…some challenging personalities. Hopefully, you will find a bright spot somewhere in the mix of attendees but if the thought of what’s to come is making you feel more like “Scrooge” than “Elf”. Keep reading…
No matter what we do we always have a choice.
At first you may think, “Yeah right-if I don’t bake the turkey, wrap the gifts or show up at my in-laws’ I will never hear the end of it. What kind of choice is that?” Whether you are aware of it or not all of those things are still choices. You choose to cook, wrap and show up for whatever reason, but ultimately it is still your choice. Why does this matter? Well for starters most of us gals like to be in control (more on this in a later post) and the sense that we are not in control (don’t have a choice) usually brings out the snarky, resentful side of who we really are. When we acknowledge that we are choosing and we are going to do these things regardless of our excitement level we take back our power and realize we are in complete control (of ourselves). Ultimately you are going follow through so why create the suffering to go along with it? P.S If you don’t want to do something then don’t do it-again your choice.
You can’t control the weather.
If you have kept an eye on the recent weather events over the past weeks we all know what that means. I like to call other people, events and circumstance “weather conditions” because they can’t be controlled either. So if you know you are going to encounter some “bad weather” this season, have an evacuation plan. Now this doesn’t mean you literally have to leave when the conversation takes a wrong turn, it just means that you have emotionally “sand- bagged” just in case. Examples might be having a predetermined statement for certain people’s zingers. Change the subject, don’t take the bait and if necessary walk away and find a kid to talk to. Set a time limit, it is ok to adhere to boundaries if 2 hours is your cap be clear and be firm with others about the length of your visit-if you do decide to stay longer than you really want to remember you are choosing to do so and you can choose how you feel about it too.
Plan something really fun.
This time of year should be about celebrations and enjoyment. If you have commitments you plan to honor but are not completely jazzed about them, no big deal show up and make the best of it. Who do you really want to spend time with? Don’t make excuses this is the best time of year to connect with those you love. Do you miss your best friend or sister this time of year? Plan a Skype night, clear your calendar and catch up over a glass of wine. Even if it is a day all to yourself do something special, make plans and get excited about it!
A week from today starts the first round begins. No matter where you are or who you are with choose gratitude and peace. Plan ahead and be kind not just to others but to yourself, I can’t promise your holidays will be perfect but if you want a little “happy” this year it’s all yours!