Finding Purpose in the Holidays
Does the holiday season seem a bit empty?
Do you feel it’s all about expectation and not enough meaning?
Are you unfilled by traditional duties?
More and more, the holiday season in American culture seems to be changing.
From stores shelving red and green decor months prior to social media showcasing what the “perfect holiday season” should look like, what was once a time to spend gathering and celebrating may feel like one of consumerism and exhaustion.
If you feel it’s time to bring new purpose to your holiday season, then you may find the following tips useful for restructuring this special time of year.
For many, slowing down is the opposite of what really happens, but Dr. Graves believes that this time of year is meant to be used as a way to relax and regroup from the past year.
Rather than trying to “do it all” consider when, how, and where you can “just be” throughout the holidays.
What feels right to you at the holidays and what is sucking your energy dry?
If traveling to a variety of homes to see everyone isn’t enjoyable, feeling the need to eat everything has your digestive track upset, or spending well-earned money on pleasing others is too draining, don’t be afraid to put boundaries in place of what you can and can’t do in order to stay physically and mentally healthy and responsible.
Connect in a Meaningful Way
Humans are creatures that crave social connection – especially at the holidays. In years past, this may have meant traveling to be with loved ones, hosting a special dinner, or attending a variety of parties.
But since COVID-19, much of this has changed. Travel may be uncertain, planning a big meal by yourself can be overwhelming (when we are already exhausted from the past year), and parties may not be happening like they used to.
Now that we are slowly coming out of the shock of the pandemic, it can be a good time to regroup in regards to relationships at the holidays.
- Whom do you truly desire spending time with at the holidays?
- How can you authentically connect with loved ones without expectations that create stress?
Try to spend quality time with those that enhance your holiday season while possibly limiting time with those who deplete from it.
Mindfully Manage Consumerism
The holidays are filled with sharing things and for many, this is one way to connect with others. Whether it’s a batch of homemade goodies or a thoughtful gift, a meaningful gesture can be special for both the giver and the receiver.
However, excessive buying and giving can empty both your wallet and your mental health – which can hinder the authenticity of the relationship.
For mindful management of what you chose to gift, consider:
- creating experiences
- giving a gift that represents a fond memory
- offering your full-presence (such as taking time off to be with friends and family)
- donating to a charity in honor of neighbors, co-workers, friends, etc. rather than buying individual gifts
Let go of the expectation to buy for everyone you know. If it feels too much, it probably is.
The holidays are meant to be celebrated, but that doesn’t mean you always have to do what you’ve always done if it doesn’t fulfill you. If the season leaves you feeling like you need a vacation afterwards, you may want to consider new ways to make that celebration work for you.
To regroup during the holidays and help keep stress manageable, please contact us at (303) 688-6698 or click here to schedule a complimentary 15 minute phone consultation with Dr. Graves to discuss what issues you are dealing with.
The CNMA office provides naturopathic care, testing, massage, and holistic counseling to those in Castle Rock, Castle Pines, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Centennial, Parker, Larkspur, Monument, Colorado Springs, and the greater Denver metro area. For those outside of these areas, virtual appointments are available.