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Five Steps to Survive the Holiday Season & Start a New Year Right.

The time to celebrate the anticipated Holiday season is here. Statistics show alarming proof that health issues like hives, suicide attempts and depression tend to increase during the Holiday season. How can the happiest time of the year for most can be so painful to others? Well, there are many variables that can be blamed for this phenomenon. Life circumstances, spiritual emptiness, financial challenges and of course untreated or unidentified physical and mental health issues.

Taking into account current circumstances around the world, climate disasters, division and terrorism among others: there are plenty of reasons for worry and hopelessness to increase.

What can we do to take on the challenge of making the best of the year 2018?

Here are five actions steps that can help you to gracefully let go of the year 2018 and receive 2019 in Victory.

Define your True North- Everyone has a need to rely and believe in others. For example, Christians celebrate because they believe, their lives shall model Jesus example and mandates. Their hope comes from God Jehovah; they believe their heavenly father is covering them in all circumstances and that all life experiences have profound purpose to shape their faith, strength and ability to serve others. Other spiritually organized groups are also based on traditions and believes about life, work an behavior.

Take the time to reflect on your values and what do you believe can bring you hope and strength during difficult times.

Find your Purpose- Living life not understanding your purpose is like drifting on a raft on the Pacific Ocean. Your chances of being found and live a long fulfilling life are very, very low. Take the time to reflect on your goals and accomplishments and identify your areas of opportunity and where do you perform best. Then make a plan to improve, change, add or end habits and life practices that can keep you from achieving your goals. For example if you would like to lose weight, take an honest look at your eating and active living habits and make positive changes accordingly.

Also, give yourself grace and celebrate the daily victories in your life.

Be the change the world needs- Helping others is an effective way to improve your mood. Being a positive influence to others can be empowering in the midst of any life challenge. Hope is contagious, when you walk defeated by your own circumstances but can push forward and find ways to bless others you’ll feel accomplished and purpose filled. Get involved with meaningful causes and keep in mind that everyone has a story and most likely are going through something. Helping others heal is healing within itself.

Know your limitations- The season of giving can also be the season for overwhelming bills and unrealistic gift expectations. Create a budget for the season and stick with it, don’t feel you have to meet everyone’s expectations in regards to what they need or want. Explore simple but meaningful gifts, like personalized photo calendars, mugs, gift cards and such. Unplanned spending will show up as a pile of bills long after the season ends.

Do it yourself gifts are also popular and effective, a tin with home baked cookies still tells a loved one you were thinking of them.

Let go of what you change- Family gatherings can be filled with so much warmth and joy. Too bad they can also include sibling rivalries, drunken arguments, the uncle we don’t leave the kids alone with and the relative that’s generous with their opinions and criticism. Choose your battles wisely, if you know someone’s personality can be a trigger for you, keep conversations light and understand why it sets you off and that their dislike might not just toward you, there can be unresolved issues in need of being handled to grow out of their ways.

That is not your job or place. Let it go!

Above all...take time to appreciate the gifts you already have.

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