The holiday spirit is about gratitude and giving. What comes to mind when you think about the holidays?
Which part of you is in charge of the holidays? Is it your judgmental self or your loving self?
Do you sigh and feel overwhelmed by the long list of things you have to do? Do you dread the idea of having to shop for gifts for family or friends? Does the idea of having to clean up the aftermath of Christmas or Chanukah make you feel anxious? Or, do you look forward to the fun, delight, and joy in the celebrating, giving and receiving?
How Your Past Affects Your Holiday Spirit
Take a moment to think back when you were a small that loved the holidays. What delighted you about Christmas? Most children get really excited about receiving gifts. Many children also feel equally excited about giving gifts. Do you remember how excited you were to decorate your home for Christmas? Remember feeling that holiday spirit?
Or, were the holidays tough for your family due to not having enough money? Maybe the holidays meant a feeling of loneliness due to the loss of a loved one? Was the holidays a very stressful time for your family?
Whatever the situation was from your past, you have an opportunity now, as an adult, to give your own inner child the holiday spirit he or she wants and deserves. You can take this opportunity to see gratitude for what you do have rather than the anxiety you feel towards all you have to do. Don’t resist the holiday spirit. Instead, be more open to it, embrace it, feel the grace of it?
How to Bring Back The Holiday Spirit
Let the child in you do the gift shopping for family and friends. Allow your inner child to receive the delight of picking out just the right gift for others. Or, better yet, find some way to give to others and find some way to share your love for them.
Even if you yourself are alone or poor, instead of feeling down and sorry for yourself, find a way to give your caring to someone who has less than you.
Take this opportunity to notice how fulfilling it is to give to others. It is better than to resist or be angry about the work involved. Take this opportunity to learn how much better your heart feels when you choose to feel grateful rather than angry or hurt..
Your Feelings Affect Your Spirit
Your feelings come from your personal thoughts. If you think you are dreading that the holidays are here, then your mindset will be negative throughout the holiday season. When you feel like there is just too much work to do, you will become anxious and even overwhelmed.
When you tell yourself that you are dreading going out to buy presents, you can start to feel resentful. If you are depressed because it is the holiday season and you are alone, dwelling on that thought can make you feel depressed.
You Can Change Your Thoughts
Instead of the negative thoughts, trying thinking of ways that you can make the holidays fun. You may start to feel excited and fell the holidays spirit! Think about how you can give to others this holiday. Thinking those thoughts can make you feel more open-hearted. Think of the joy for those people and loved ones you are shopping for. This can allow you to feel grateful.
You can choose to be a Grinch, by being close-hearted and angry about Christmas. You can also choose to be tense, anxious, judgmental, depressed, fearful, withdrawn, or resistant.
Think about who you want to be this holiday season.
Or you can choose to be happy, peaceful, excited, grateful, loving, open hearted, and joyous.
It is all up to you.
Whether or not you feel the holiday spirit is the result of how you choose to think about the holidays.
Why not try something different this holiday? Refuse to allow negative thoughts enter your mind. Instead, make a list of positive thoughts and as soon as a negative thought comes up, imagine changing channels on a TV, switching to the positive channel. Then notice how you feel!
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