The Holiday Survival Guide: It’s okay to be you.

The holiday season can bring about many unexpected and unexplainable feelings. Many people try to hide or push past these feelings in fear of being a disappointment to everyone else that seems to be in the holiday spirit. In this season, it’s important to remember that whatever feelings you have, it’s okay to be you. It’s okay to not feel a certain way & it’s okay to not want to do what everyone else is doing. This holiday season, it’s okay to just be yourself. The rest of the world will be okay. 

It’s Okay To Say No

The desire to please everyone this holiday season could result in you being stretched thin. This year, you may be asked to host Christmas, asked to pick up a last-minute gift, asked to host family members from out of town, asked to cook certain dishes, or even invited to a holiday party with co-workers. If at any point you feel exacerbated or unhappy about a favor or a task that you’ve been asked to complete, remember that it’s okay to say no. One Christmas gift from the mall and one or two dishes won’t make or break the Christmas spirit (though nothing’s quite like home cooking, there are plenty of delivery restaurants that make great dishes), and if having certain family members live with you for a few days to a week could disrupt your peace of mind, they could always stay in a hotel or with another family member. Practice saying no without feeling guilty or over-explaining. Your peace of mind and body is always a good enough reason.

It’s Okay To Be Happy

This one is especially for people that have experienced the death of a loved one. Birthdays, holidays, and other special days can be tough. The thought of being happy on those specific days may make you feel guilty as if you’re deserting your loved one that passed away. If this situation describes you, remember that you deserve happy days, even while grieving. Allowing yourself to feel happy during the holidays doesn’t mean you’re forgetting your loved one. You can honor their memory even through being happy. Your loved one’s legacy is not for you to feel sad forever. If at any time, during this season, you feel even the slightest bit of holiday cheer, allow it and embrace it. Feeling guilt during the holiday season can also be due to remembering the less fortunate. Many people, near and far, don’t have the access or ability to experience the holiday season as you. If you experience guilt from the thought of what you have versus what someone else doesn’t have, know that it’s okay to enjoy the fruits of you and your family’s labor.  (See “It’s Okay To Do Something Different & Special” for more ways to deal with the guilt)

It’s Okay To Be Sad 

Maybe you’ve lost a loved one or maybe this year has just been hectic and for the last few months of the year, you just need to relax. Whatever your reason is for not being in the holiday spirit, know that it’s okay to be sad. You may feel pressure from friends and family, strangers you see out, coworkers, and even the media to join in and be jolly, but if you’re just not feeling it this year, it’s okay to take a break from it all and look after yourself. Just as it’s okay to allow yourself to be happy, it’s also okay to allow yourself to be sad. It’s even okay to not love everything about the holiday season.

It’s Ok To Do Something Different & Special

Certain traditions are typically followed during the holidays (going out to pick a tree, decorating the tree, singing carols, families going to the mall together…ect). Holiday traditions are fun, but you don’t have to always stick with them. If you’re getting tired of your same old traditions, do something different and special this year that makes you feel happy and fulfilled. You can donate money in memory of a loved one, you can volunteer at a homeless shelter, you can even take a trip to a tropical, warmer place and spend your holiday there. The feeling of spontaneity and breaking the mold can feel exciting. Don’t confine yourself to only going with the traditional flow of things.  

At CWC Coaching, our team consists of licensed therapists, life coaches, and counselors. We assist clients with self-improvement, career development, negative self-talk, psychological pain, self-sabotaging behavior, past hurts and finding your purpose. If you are ready to increase your self-awareness and happiness, breakthrough limiting behavior and understand your purpose in life, we’d love to help guide you on this journey.

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