How do you really feel about the holidays? I must admit that the period between Thanksgiving and New Years Day is not my favorite time of the year. The days are shorter, the weather is colder, and the landscape takes on a dreary, bare look. My mood is always worse in the winter months. And when I’m in a bad mood, everything looks bleak. I find it hard to watch television or read a newspaper without being affected by all the negativity in our fast-moving news cycle.
Like many people, I tend to experience a feeling of sadness during the holidays. Another year is coming to an end, I’m getting older, and I have a few more aches and pains. I reflect on the past and worry about the year to come. It saddens me to think of the people in my family and in my life who are no longer here to spend the holidays with.
Although I now view this time of year in a less favorable light, I can still recall how much I LOVED the holidays when I was a child! There were no pressures and no regrets. It was a time to give and get gifts. I had a break from school. I enjoyed winter activities, like sledding and ice skating. It also seemed like people were nicer to each other. Like most kids, I definitely felt the “magic” of the season!
I started to think… Why can’t I take my childhood enthusiasm and combine it with my adult wisdom to create a better attitude towards this time of year? Thus, I decided to take a break from the things that bring me down, such as the news, and instead revisit my childlike wonder of Christmas. Perhaps I can find a gift that I’m really excited to give, or maybe even one I’m really excited to get! I’ll take time to notice the charitable nature of people this time of year. I’ll be sure to donate to some of my favorite causes.
And most importantly, I’ll remember to celebrate the many blessings in my life. My wife and I are grateful to live near our daughter again! We look forward to celebrating with her and have some family activities planned. We appreciate our new home in Missouri, which is a prefect fit for us! I’m grateful to be healthy and able to enjoy my retirement years.
The holidays are a time for me to take a break from all of my projects. I may be retired, but I definitely keep busy! It’s critical for highly sensitive people to have some down time, as it gives us a chance to recharge our emotional and physical batteries.
Also, I know that dwelling on the past and worrying about the future isn’t productive. It keeps me from being in the here and now. It also has no effect on the outcome of anything and only adds needless stress to my life. Instead, my intention is to focus on the present moment and build upon the things that have gone well for me throughout the year. While there were some disappointments, I trust that those were necessary for my growth, and I’ll do my best to learn from them and move on.
I believe that happiness is a choice. You can choose to enjoy the holidays, as well as the way you conduct your life. It’s all a matter of shifting your focus. This year, I choose to have a childlike attitude of joy and optimism towards the holiday season. No pressure, no regrets, and enjoying every moment that I have. It is my sincere hope that you can do the same.
How do you feel about the holidays? Do you tend to dwell on what you lack rather than on what you have? Do you take the time to appreciate all of the good in your life? I’m interested in any thoughts or comments that you have.