Let’s face it, for some people, the holidays can be filled with stress and pain. While some people are making memories with loved ones, others are reminded of those no longer in their lives. Maybe there was a recent loss of a beloved family member. Maybe there was a divorce, breakup or betrayal that rocked you to your core. If you’re moving through any of these experiences, holidays hold a different meaning and while creating new positive associations may be something to work towards, this season, you may just want to take a holiday from the Holidays.
If you noticed a pattern of getting stressed and depressed around the Holiday Season, you can consciously change that pattern now. It first starts with awareness, realizing something like: I am aware of any thoughts that come up that may trigger negative emotional patterns.
Awareness: Maybe you notice that holiday music can trigger old memories that bring you down. Notice this impacts you then check into your heart, comfort yourself, and remind yourself that old beliefs that hurt you need your care and attention.
New Rules: As you start holiday shopping, do it from a new perspective. Make sure that you have plenty of time to get the shopping done so you don’t feel rushed. Maybe decide to shop online to reduce stress and mailing costs. Maybe decide you’re giving the gift of your presence instead of your presents this year.
Whatever it takes to make your holiday season go smoothly, be willing to make the adjustments.
Traditions: Look at what traditions you want to keep and which ones fail to serve you. With the world as it is today, consider letting go of old, worn out traditions that create stress and adjust to the new reality.
Self-Care: Look at what you can do differently to take a holiday from the Holidays. Maybe treat yourself to a massage or a facial, support your body with extra nutrients, or get a pedicure or have an entire Spa Day.
Letting Go: Reduce the stress by letting go of any tasks that are unnecessary. Maybe reduce your holiday baking. Let go of excess card writing. Let go of trying to be everything to everyone. Learn how to say “no” in order to preserve your time, well-being and sanity.
Set some boundaries. Set some boundaries around spending. Create boundaries around what topics are off limits, and how much you’ll be indulging in holiday food and festivities.
Today, regardless of what it takes, you may choose to take a holiday from the Holidays. Instead, creating enjoyable, stress-free traditions can be your plan for this year.
Dr. Debi, Founder and CEO, The PBT (Post Betrayal Transformation) Institute