It’s the holiday season… and I want to ask you: how do you feel about that?
The holiday season is a wonderful time for many people, when they get to hang out with their loved ones and spend time connecting back to their roots… enjoying wonderful meals, exchanging beautiful gifts, heartfelt messages and hugs, savouring long relaxing days and great conversations.
At least, that’s the ideal, isn’t it?
If that’s the kind of experience you tend to have, then that’s wonderful and you are truly blessed!
If it’s not always like that for you… if your reality doesn’t necessarily live up to the hype… then you’re not alone. For some people, the holiday season can be a lonely and isolating time. For others it’s busy and packed with activities, but also very stressful.
During the holidays, we often put a lot of pressure on ourselves to have a ‘deeply fulfilling’ time, almost like some story book or Hallmark Card version of events… and that means we can become really invested in wanting the people we love to accept us, validate us, be warm and fuzzy towards us, and to see our point of view. And when all of that doesn’t quite go to plan, well, it can feel a bit devastating.
Not everyone has the ‘ideal’ family. Some don’t have family at all. And for those that do, some people face a lot of negativity amongst their relatives. Others are dealing with the loss of loved ones, which can feel particularly challenging at this time of year.
I know that in my own family the combination of too much alcohol, unresolved issues and tricky broken/blended family dynamics was usually a powder keg recipe for drama and emotional eruptions… Which meant that the holidays were hardly my favourite time of year.
The reality for many of us Abundance Coders, is that our friends and families don’t always ‘get’ the abundant way of thinking… And that can be frustrating. And disappointing.
How To Think With An Abundance Mindset
It’s important at this time of year to respect and protect your own state of mind. Here are 5 very practical strategies you can you use in order to stay positive, keep calm and carry on when holiday emotions are running high.
- Connect with your ‘abundantly minded’ peeps. Reach out to the friends who get you and connect with them at this time. You can offer each other valuable support. Even if it’s just saying something like “Hey, if I need to these holidays, can I call you?” … activate your support network in advance.
- Try not to drink too much at family gatherings! Getting drunk is one of the fastest ways to make sure that situations WILL get messy! If things easily tend in the messy direction for you and yours, then staying relatively sober is really going to help you navigate the situation. Save your big booze blow-out for another time.
- Ask yourself this question if a debate starts to heat up: “What’s more important to me… My relationship with this person, or winning this argument?” (Cos you know, no one wins once it escalates to WWIII)
- Steer the conversation towards shared experiences with friends and family members that are positive. Great memories. Fun times. And if you’re remembering a lost loved one, share beautiful, funny and uplifting stories about that person.
- Take ‘time out’ if the situation starts to get negative. This can be as simple as excusing yourself to go to the bathroom. Just leaving the room for a while can be enough to take the steam out of things. Breathe. Look yourself in the mirror and give yourself some good advice. Take an extra long time in there if you need to, to calm down. Chances are, nobody will notice you were in there a bit longer than normal. Or, if the weather permits then try going for a walk around the block to change your state. Moving your body will help you to shift the energy. And remember not to take it all too seriously… try to think of ways you can inject a bit of humour into the situation. Nothing diffuses an argument better than some light-hearted laughter.
I hope you find these suggestions useful, and may I wish you a happy and safe holiday season!