Holidays can often be a time of incredible stress (not always) – getting things wrapped up at work to leave for 4 days, packing, travel, or cleaning the house and shopping for numerous guests, or if your single and far from family, the impending feeling of loneliness that can come around the holidays.
In personally experiencing all of these situations, here are some tips that will help you make the most of this holiday called thanksgiving, a word that can create stress or gratitude (or both).
- Remember that it’s a gift to have a holiday. I “get” to have thanksgiving. Use “I get to” in place of I have to or I need to, and you’ll feel a lot differently as you go about your day, week, and month.
- When checking off the to do list at work or at home (and you feel anxious and stressed), wanting to get everything done at once, take a deep breath, even two, and bring your attention back to what you’re doing right here, right now. Being present will help you feel more relaxed as you get things done.
- When you’re with family, notice when you react and want to lash out or go into past behaviors (you know the ones you had when you were 10?), be kind with yourself, and commit to a new response. Maybe it’s a deep breath or taking a personal time out in the bathroom. Reenter with a new intention of patience and compassion for yourself and them.
- Make the effort to see a quality in your family member you really like. Maybe they’re really giving, witty, patient, truthful, or determined. What can you be thankful for about them? We can’t change anyone else, but we can change the way we see them…
- Before you eat Thanksgiving dinner, say some words of gratitude for the food and people you’re getting to spend this meal with. You can even suggest to them that each person say what they’re grateful for before you eat. It’s a wonderful way to connect and can bring more presence and joy to the meal.
- If you’re single and far from family, or without family, reach out to people to spend the holiday with a family or friends near you. Others may not know that you’re on your own, so making an effort could provide a great unexpected holiday experience!
Whatever you do, take a moment to thank whatever entity you want to thank for the gift of this life. That we can do anything at all is a miracle!
Categories: Gratitude, Health & Happiness, Heart Centered Living, Relationships