Highs and Lows of the Holidays
I can’t believe it’s the LAST month of the year! We are well into the holiday season and with that brings a lot of fun and festiveness, but can also be tense for some. Thanksgiving has come and gone, but it has always been one of my favorite holidays. Between the yummy food and family time, it has an overall sense of ease. However, as we transition into the winter holidays, I sometimes feel a slight bit of stress with this time of year.
Like some, the holidays can be overwhelming for me. For example, the “Christmas craze” is distracting, the expectations around giving gifts and receiving them, the hustle and bustle of holiday shoppers, anticipation for the new year, etc., etc. can be a bit much. It’s not easy to find grounding in the chaos. For me, this time of year also brings in a bit of sadness. It’s a reminder of the things we love and hold dear- most of all family. If you’re like me and have lost loved ones, the holidays can be a little tough. But always with the ebb and flow of life, it’s a good reminder to continue to practice gratitude, for the year that has passed (no matter the highs and lows)!
My personal holiday traditions have changed over the years and I’m still trying to find ones that bring me joy as opposed to what everyone else does, or what I think I’m “supposed to do.” So often it feels like we need to have traditions tied to a specific day. While that can be so much fun, it can sometimes lead us to feel like our day, or ritual doesn’t compare to others.
Instead, the idea behind traditions is to give you something to look forward to when this time of year rolls around. It can be as simple as having an annual conversation with a loved one, or even something you do for yourself in the name of self-care (that you might not normally do otherwise). Releasing yourself from the constraints of a specific day or holiday can be freeing, and help remind us of the REAL things we look forward to every year. Barrett and I have a tradition (that has been passed down) of lighting a specific candle during the first snow of the year. Which helps us look forward to the winter season, and whenever it happens, we know the time to gather is upon us.
How do you fare with the holidays? Do you have things you look forward to or traditions of your own that you do during the winter months? Let me know next time you’re in!