Keeping It Real for the Holidays
Truth is, the culprit is not outside of you at all, but by and large, located in the memories of your own childhood holidays.
What this means is that the memories of what happened to you… the magic, the longings or the disappointments…rise up this time of year like resurrected ghosts. These phantom images propel you to try to either recreate those magical times you enjoyed, or more often, design the perfect holidays that everyone says you should have had but never did.
Unfortunately, the only thing that ends up being created is a perfect recipe for stress.
Marketers and advertisers know all about this, and prey on your unsuspecting psyches. You become convinced that buying the perfect gift, eating more delicious food or setting a Martha Stewart table will reconnect you with the experiences you’re longing for.
But if your actions are motivated by reaching into the past or out into the future, you come up empty, no matter how things turn out. Your attention is scattered, searching for something that doesn’t exist. This stops you from paying full attention to what is unfolding right now.
The key is to separate fact from fantasy so that you can show up in your own life and really engage. Yes, fantasies are natural, but not very realistic. (Even Martha has a whole crew making those magical images come to life). Truth is, the past is over, and even wonderful times are meant to be cherished, not recreated.
Take a breath and gently remind yourself of what you can and cannot do. And remember…the possibility of having wonderful holidays is not buried in the past or floating out somewhere in the future. It is sitting quietly in front of you right now, vibrant, alive and unlike any other moment you will ever experience.
Don’t miss it.
Until next time…