Happy Birthday America!
Enjoy your holiday and be safe.
Happy Birthday America!
Enjoy your holiday and be safe.
It’s the holiday season and we celebrate Thanksgiving this week. In this hectic time we often forget or postpone taking care of ourselves. It’s often difficult to say no. No to extra food. No to working very hard in your business so you can have time off. No to anything where you think you are needed like volunteering, hosting etc.
I’d like to reframe "saying no." A no to someone might mean a yes to you and your self care. Saying no the the binge eating over the holidays is not a deprivation. It’s saying yes to your health and well being. Saying no the the extra work might mean some things don’t get done now. It’s saying yes to you and meeting your own needs. Saying no to hosting the holiday meal this year might make some waves and you are saying yes to you.
You don’t want to disappoint, upset or offend others so you say yes to them to avoid this possibility. As a result you often feel overwhelmed, disappointed or upset. There is a harmony in looking at a no as saying yes to yourself. The old adage comes up, “Take care of yourself so you are able to take care of others.” Even the airlines tells you to put your mask on before you help your children or those around you.
Each time you are asked to do something ask yourself, “Is this a no to them or a yes to me.” Feel the answer. If it’s taking care of yourself and doing no harm to others, it’s a yes to you so say no.
Try evaluating each invitation or request of you when you feel a little conflicted, “Would you please stay late at the office today to finish a project?” Go inside and see what you are feeling or thinking about the possibility. If it feels like you should stay and you have other plans, saying no is truly a saying yes to you. Because a yes to them would be saying no to you.
The Holidays are often a very frantic time. There is so much to do, presents to buy, decorations to hang, etc etc etc. We get so much into the doing of the holidays that we often miss out on the being of the holidays. The being of the holidays is about love, compassion, giving, sharing, forgiving. When we are in the doing we must consciously experience the being. One can be in the present moment even while doing, but it takes practice. When I am frantic, trying to get things done, remember all the things to do, I sometimes find myself making mistakes, forgetting things, missing steps or having small accidents. This is because am not in the moment.
Let’s take the holiday meal, for example. The moment we decide to host the meal, our minds race into the future. Planning the meal is the closest we get to the present moment because we have to really focus on how much of this and what kind of that to serve. Preparing the meal is usually a rush because there is so much to do before the guests arrive. (We are in the future) The guests arrive and we spin trying to take care of their needs. Trying to anticipate what they need. (future) Serving the meal is also a future thing. Being the host you keep an eye on everyone to see if they need anything. Your attention is “out there” and so you don’t even truly enjoy your own meal. And then you must serve dessert. After everyone has gone home you remember the good times. (Now you're in the past.)Very few present moments.
Let’s do that meal again. I’m the host of the meal this year. I enjoy the thought of having everyone here. I plan the meal feeling the “taste” of each dish. YUM! Then the time comes to prepare the meal. I enjoy each task: peeling potatoes, I notice the little eyes and marvel at how the universe presents us with such wonderful things to eat. Stuffing the turkey, I love it that the cavity is big enough to hold the tasty dressing. Cleaning up, I appreciate hot water and soap.
The guests arrive. I greet each one with hugs and love, totally being with each for a moment. I set up a self serve situation so I can be with my guests and not worry about meeting their needs. I encourage others to help and clean up because we are a small community and communities work together. We laugh and share during the meal and decide to wait for dessert. What a wonderful, peaceful and joyful day we are having.
I choose being in the moment. It’s so easy, flowing and full of love and appreciation. Here’s to you choose being in the moment this holiday season.
Getting together for the holidays can be a drag. Aunt Millie drinks too much, Papa john gets argumentative, etc etc. What if you looked for one good thing about each person and you made it your mission during the get together to tell each person that you liked that “thing” about them? Look for a break in Papa John’s arguments and negative comments so you can say, “ you know John, I really like your shirt.” Or catch Millie before she is too far gone and say, “Aunt Millie, I just love those earings.” Or Uncle Bart, I think you have the bluest eyes.” You will be amazed at the difference in how the family relates to you.
The holidays are difficult because mainly people are worried about if they look good or their son makes them look good or if they will like the food, etc. Each is worried about themselves. What you can do with nice comments is to turn the focus on them and they feel validated or heard and thus relax more with you.
The best thing to do when someone in the family gets difficult to be around, is to love them and tell them something good. We are all running around needing to be loved trying not to be.
Let me know if you got different results from your family this year.
Photo Credit: spotonlists.com