I am writing this blog leading up to Christmas in the midst of a new wave of COVID and for many people living in Australia our restrictions have relaxed, while in other countries they are ramping up again. We are each finding our way in amongst the changing nature of the pandemic, the heartache, the safety versus risk decisions we are all individually making. Love Your way at Christmas is timely.
Yesterday two friends told me they have cancelled their festive invites and are now staying home alone with a bottle of champagne and treats. They are among those more vulnerable. Others are choosing different options. That’s why I say Love Your Way, do what is right for you, and what is right for the community your live in. We are not seperate and isolated beings, we are one.
Here are 8 Tips and suggestions to enrich your holiday season:
1. Make it your own, love your way!
Decide what you want to feel and experience this season. Let your imagination run free for a moment. Get clarity for yourself.
How can you nourish yourself and others in the most rewarding way this year? What is your best form of celebration and joy, relaxation and loving connections? What do you need and what can you initiate? Make sure it does no harm to others and go for it!
2. The Good is Very Good.
Find a quiet space and make a list of all your openings, breakthroughs, positive changes and achievements during 2021. Savour the good experiences in your life. We are making it through a global pandemic!
Recent brain research shows that savoring even one good thing primes us for happiness and increases our self worth. Dwell on these moments, expand them and breathe them in. Start now and continue in the days ahead.
At this time of the year we can get stressed trying to live up to crazy expectations that leave us feeling a lack of intimacy, even with those close to us. Instead, if you value and prioritise intimacy and love, you will have a much more fulfilling time. This can be with a partner, friends, family. It can be done in-person and on zoom. What matters most, after all?
If you are in couple and spending time with others, it’s vital to make time to be alone to nourish your love. If you are single even more important to favour intimacy with beloveds. Intimate moments with strangers can also be nourishing when mutual.
4. Turn it around
At Christmas time we are flooded by the media with the ideals of the perfect family, happy days and fabulous relationships. The reality is many people are lonely, fight with their families, or exhaust themselves trying to ‘get it right’.
If you are struggling this year, you can turn it around. Join a gathering or start one yourself. Let your friends or family know what you need. Don’t try and handle it all on your own. Many people enjoy an ‘orphans’ Christmas lunch with friends.
And if you blessed in this area, who can you include?
5. Endings lead to new beginnings
As the year comes to an end it’s a good time to reflect on what’s ending, and let it go as you wish. No forcing, just acknowledging what’s ending and feel it dissolving back into existence. With a glass of wine or herbal tea late at night, or on your yoga mat at dawn – tune in and choose your deepest most powerful time to do this ritual.
6. Give the gift of you.
The best present you can give is yourself. How can you gift others this Christmas? Perhaps deep listening and masculine presence, a poem or a kind word or gesture. Feminine connection, care and cookies. Making time for someone who needs it. It’s your unique contribution that matters.
7. Say yes to what is!
What we resist tends to hang around so if you find yourself gritting your teeth over the commercial jingles, the cultural expectations, the family patterns, the drunken squabbles, then practice the way of the Tao. Be like water that flows around obstacles and keeps swishing its own merry way. Breathe and create afresh. Be who you want to be.
Deal with what is here and now, and don’t worry about the future.
8. Celebrate like you mean it.
Holiday time means time for you to celebrate. What’s your thing? Cooking delicious meals with all your senses alive and zinging? Making music with your friends and stirring the soul? A beach adventure, having lots of great sex or simply winding down at home? (or all of the above!)
Go for it – no guilt, be total!