2020 has been a wild ride to say the least! Have you filled your 2020 bingo card yet? For many of you the holidays may look a little different this year. I know there are those who will get to spend it with their loved ones, but there are many like me who may choose to spend it in isolation. This can make an already difficult season even harder to cope with. I would be lying if I said that no tears were shed at my decision to stay home.
Those who are close to me know that my favorite place is at home with my family, but all of us fall into the medically susceptible category and have decided that travel is too risky right now. So the question is how to move past the tears and into a place of hope?
Well the answer depends on what is making it difficult for you to find your joy. I will break it down into categories and give you some tips and tools to rock around your Christmas tree, Light a spiritual fire for your Menorah, get creative with your Kwanzaa or ring in the New Year with a sense of joy!
Challenge 1. Money is tight
Many of you have found yourself in between jobs, stuck in quarantine, or counting your pennies in the off chance that the proverbial deer poop hits the fan. Here are some ways to celebrate while counting the coin.
Challenge 2. You are all alone
You may find yourself all alone during this difficult time and you will have the choice of being stuck in sad mode, or planning out fun ways to celebrate.
Challenge 3. You are straight up depressed
Okay, I got it 2020, was rotten and the flying snakes and no toilet paper really iced your cake. Seriously though there are several ways to cope with this:
Love is paradoxically both the simplest and most complex of all human emotions. It is easy to love someone who is kind, compassionate, and loves you back. How about that loving feeling when they are hurtful, spiteful, jealous? I had a client come to me about this recently and I said to them; "Love them not because of who they are, but because of who you are." This caused them to pause. You can love someone past the pain. It does not mean that you must be a doormat and accept bad behavior. You can love someone and yourself by creating distance. You can voice your truth and tell them that although you love them, you will not allow them to continue to hurt you. You always have the right to step back and walk away. It could be temporary or permanent.
Time away does not mean an hour or a day, it means real time, with no texting, emailing, or phone contact. No social media either, don't stalk their page and expect to get any healing done. Behaviors and attitudes need to change. But you also have to look at how you have been treating yourself. How you treat yourself, tells others how you want to be treated. If you do not give yourself enough time, you will attract friends, coworkers, family, and significant others who do not give you any time. If you never spend any money on yourself, why should anyone else? If you make nasty and hurtful comments about yourself, you are telling others, it is okay for them to do that as well. If you continue to allow people to mistreat you, there is no reason for them to change. Your attitude of self love should act like a beacon of light for others to be attracted to and to live in the space of that light.
It can be scary to make these changes, but you will find that the people who stay with you through those changes are well worth keeping. Self love is powerful. It is different than conceit. Conceit says, "I am better than everyone else." Self love says, "I, like everyone else am worthy of love." "I, like everyone else, am important and am worthy of being heard." Conceit is a lower vibration while empowerment takes nothing away from anyone else.
So if you love someone who is acting "unlovable," remember that you can love them because you are a loving person who knows that under their behavior is someone who is insecure, in pain, lost, angry or any number of things that have absolutely nothing to do with who you are as a person. You can love someone without giving them your energy and time. You can give them a loving thought and move on with your day. You can wish them well and then spend time making your life awesome.
I wish for you a season of love and abundance.
I am well aware that Thanksgiving can be a hot button topic, as history starts to reveal a rather toxic relationship between the Pilgrims and The Native Americans who helped them. That the story we were taught as children was an edited and sanitized version that told of turkeys, pumpkin pie and two cultures coming together in harmony. Let's be real here, the pilgrims were poorly prepared, starving and about to die in a new and stark world. Their neighbors looked on, shook their heads and went, well we probably shouldn't let them die. Some help and food exchanged. There was a celebration that they made it through the year. They then turned around and betrayed their new "friends." That is the nutshell quick version. Ultimately it was not good for the Native Americans and they probably regretted their decision to be friendly. I highly suggest reading up on the full story, from the horrible boat trip over to the betrayal at the end, it's a good read.
Life is like that though, sometimes we help others and they are grateful and other times they turn it all around on us and make us wonder why we offered a hand. Learn from those experiences and learn to set healthy boundaries. Give and help because it brings you joy. Remember that those who really need help, may not be in the right mind space to accept it or return the favor. They may not be able to show you or anyone appreciation and that is fine. If you can appreciate the moment and expansion you feel in giving of yourself, then that is what matters.
As we meet in person or remotely with our family and friends, keep yourself in that headspace: Offer love and help, but set healthy boundaries. Be a shoulder to lean on not a crutch to rely on. If you are feeling low on energy, take a break from everyone and go for a little walk, then come back to the hustle and bustle. Remember that pets and babies, make for a great energy boost! Play, eat, and have fun with those you love.
Personally Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, not for the 1600's roots, but for the family and friends. I love the smells, the tastes and the conversations. I love breaking the bread for stuffing with my father and the smell of my mother's homemade applesauce. I adore the endless leftovers and sneaking another sliver of pumpkin pie. I love the look of the geese as they fly and honk overhead and the sound of leaves crunching underfoot. The simple joys of fall and home, that is what I am Thankful for. While this year finds me away from home during the holidays, for the first time in my life, I am thankful for technology that can bring us together. I am grateful that I have my little dog to keep me company and that I can put food on the table. There are a million things that I can find to be thankful for and I hope that you can too! May you and your family find a way to be close, may your bellies be full and your hearts warm.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.