3 Common Mistakes and How to Fix Them.
We often find ourselves losing our cool or getting anxious and frustrated at the time when most want to enjoy family and friends. If you found yourself in those common shoes, and here are a few tips that will help you and your family enjoy the holidays with more ease and comfort.
1. Thoughts of “Holiday Bliss” For All. Perhaps due to the books we read or the movies we watched, many of us grew up with the parental directive of holiday bliss for all. This can result in taking on enormous amounts of responsibility to create moments of holiday perfection for our children and the family. Yet, this is not the way things normally work out. We often find the best-laid plans result in moments that are “less” than what we imagined in our minds. We then get frustrated when life doesn’t unfold as we want it. So, what’s the solution?
Solution: Holiday Bliss Follows Daily Bliss.
There is little of real value that we give over the holidays that we can’t give every single day. If we get caught up in making one day or one event the ‘biggie’, then we don’t get it. Start with the actions that bring daily bliss to you and do them today. Give from your heart today. Give in small ways today. Give love where it’s unexpected today. Do all of these things now.
And then we aren’t doing all of this work for weeks on end seeking the blissful moment. Make them all blissful moments. And the holidays become the icing on the cake.
2. Trying To Create Moments For Others & Getting Lost In Their
Reaction. We usually make the mistake of creating scenes in our mind where we see the response of our children or our family or friend and get excited about creating these moments for them. The problem comes in when we get addicted to the imagined response or reaction to our gift or our meal or even our decorating. Our addiction to others’ reactions is most obvious when the response is the opposite of what we intended. Yikes, we’re devastated and we’re upset.
Solution: Focus Only On Appreciation for “Your Best”.
The key here is to shift the focus from what others do or say to notice what my heart tags me to do. What is it the feels right? If it is giving, then give the best you can. If it is loving, then love the best you can. If it is sharing your thoughts, then share the best you can. Just keep your focus on your action of doing your best and then bring appreciation to those moments. There’s no
need for anything fancy, just be smiling as you give, as you share, as you entertain within an eye toward appreciating your desire to give it your best. Then, as they like or dislike, you know that you are just there to do the best you can. You can’t do more.
3. Repeating Bad Decisions Year After Year Out of Guilt of Obligation.
As a family, it is important to invest some energy into reviewing previous holiday seasons. And noticing what worked and what didn’t work. It’s a typical human fault that we adopt a “losing strategy” and yet tend to repeat this over and over despite our pain and suffering. So, plan a 30-minute family review session over dinner. The reason behind this family discussion is to increase awareness of what has worked and what didn’t work. Be honest about the time, energy, and psychological costs of various decisions.
At times, your children may enjoy events that simply cost too much emotionally for mom or dad. At other times, you may notice that certain parties or celebrations involved huge amounts of time and energy. And yet, brought relatively little return.
Solution: Identify Losing Strategies and Drop Them Like A Hot Potato!
Be brutally honest. Was it worth it? If not, then force yourself to make some changes. Get help. Reduce the spending. Cancel it. Have someone else do it. Decline an offer.
One of the best ways to see your way through this is with some independent input. Bring some outside parties into your family discussion and let them offer some input. Permit them, to be honest, and offer a strong suggestion. You don’t have to take their advice. You just want some input. The goal is sanity and peace, not perfection. If you choose less, it can be more. When you are focused on just doing your best to enjoy love and share.
Have a Great Holiday Season!