I was at my local tea shop picking up some gifts for a few upcoming dinners and parties. While I was happily pondering which tea for whom, a few people came in the store with expressions on their faces that resembled a deer caught in the headlights!
One of the women I recognized, so I asked her, “What’s up?” For her, she was just amazed that every year December comes and every year she has the same feeling that so much is going on she just can’t seem to find room to enjoy!
So I told her, “That’s because you haven’t DECIDED to have fun with all the rushing around, parties, dinners, gifts, etc.”
At this time of year, our minds often get swept up in tradition that can be both a helpful and a not-so-helpful thing. We actually defer to auto-pilot rather than doing the Holidays consciously. This can lead to stress, resentment and burnout. If you’re finding yourself feeling like my friend, try the following:
1. Take a moment right now and FEEL into how YOU would LIKE TO FEEL throughout December and the Holidays. Really stop, close your eyes if it helps, and imagine how you would like to feel. It might by “relaxed and have fun”, or “easy-going and generous”, or maybe “quiet and thoughtful”.
Too many of us get caught up in the “this is what I HAVE to do” kind of Holidays which leads to feeling like you’re just doing it all for “doing it all’s” sake. Let’s drop that kind of unconscious behavior!
2. Now, own how you want to feel by DECIDING to align yourself with those feelings in everything you do.
For example, let’s say you’ve chosen to feel “relaxed and have fun”. You can still make a list of Things To Do, but now you ask yourself “How can I do these things in a relaxed and fun manner?” For some of you it might be pouring a glass of wine one evening and shopping online for gifts. Another, it might be meeting a friend to shop with, or shopping followed by a yoga class. For guests and parties, ask yourself the same question “Feeling relaxed and having fun is key for me, how can I make this fun?”
The key to happiness in ANY moment or event in your life is to feel into how you want to feel and decide to align with those feelings. What happens in your brain is you begin to search for those actions, people, and places that fit the description of the command you’ve given (e.g. relaxed and fun). Remember, you SEE with your mind, not your eyes. This type of conscious behavior also allows you to know when you are out of alignment with what you want so you can be awake to what is actually going on and adjust. It’s all perspective and it’s within your control!
One minute of being mindful is worth a month of getting what you want!
Ho! Ho! Ho!