19 Nov Surviving the Holidays | Soul-Care Tips
The holiday season has a way of stirring each one of us in a variety of ways. Depending on our family backgrounds and relationships with family members, we can experience a myriad of both thoughts & emotions as the season approaches. As the season starts and as the year comes to a close, here are three questions take time to reflect on and to consider as you aim to care for yourself well in the process of giving family and friends all you have:
1) What do I need for this season to bring enrichment to my soul?
Often times we do allow the hustle & bustle of the season to drown out everything else. In order to give to others well, what do you need to thrive in that process and maintain your own sense of self? Is it regularly going on a date night with your spouse through the next few months to maintain connection and depth? Is it a life-giving routine to start your day that needs to continue? Could it be reading a book on gratitude to set your heart in the right place, or perhaps an advent calendar to dive in to? Or even possibly some new family traditions to set your trajectory towards connection instead of accumulation this season? It may be a weekly coffee date for yourself, or a daily walk outdoors to get fresh air. Is it a conversation with a family member you’ve been postponing for some time? Whatever it is, finding space to name it, being aware of your own need, and being disciplined to make it a priority will be key for thriving in the season ahead.
2) What does your best Yes look like to you?
A few weeks ago, I came across this quote, which is a new take on how to picture the remaining days of this current month. “ ‘No’vember: A time to start saying ‘no’ to people, places, & things that drain your energy.” When I first read that, it honestly rubbed me the wrong way because it felt somewhat harsh. However, in the past, I have been one that has had a challenging time saying no in order to please someone else. Some are better at this than others, but what it causes us to all do is take inventory on what does and does not bring life to our souls. Your best yes could be enjoying one-on-one time with family members throughout the day; it could be doing a turkey trot on thanksgiving morning and committing to that; it could be making your favorite dish for your family or friend gathering; it could be being honest about what you have to give of yourself in this current season of your life to those people who love you unconditionally. Whatever your best yes might be, you can DO it.
3) How do you cultivate gratitude this holiday season?
For many of us, there are situations we will face over the coming weeks where we will have little to no control over. And in the midst of that, what does gratitude and honor for self & others look like? Perhaps it truly could simply be a prayer of thanks for each person you’re gathered with or a quote that is daily read on the ways in which the spirit of gratitude breathes life to the heart. And may we also be thankful for time; time in the sense of what has taken place in the past and how that has shaped us, the present for what is currently taking place and WHO is taking place in nurturing growth in our lives, and for the future, that we would face it with promise, joy, hope & expectancy that we will continue to change for the good of ourselves & those around us.
God bless you and yours especially this holiday season!
Andrea Mason local mama and blog writer. She has a passion for spiritual formation and seeing people healthy and whole. Andrea and her husband live in Zeeland and have four beautiful boys. For more from this amazing girlfriend, check out her blog: https://www.flourish-within.com/blog