The holidays sure do look magical in the movies with families gathered around their gorgeous tables and candles burning in the windows of large beautiful homes while groups sing carols in the street. I don’t know about you, but that’s not my life. My holidays are definitely not that picture of perfection, but then again, perfection in itself is illusive. I’ve learned lots of lessons over the years about how to deal with imperfect holidays, and I’d love to share a few with you now:
1. Don’t ever compare your holiday experience with others. Just don’t do it. It’s unhealthy. More than likely you’ll just wind up sad and maybe even a little jealous. As humans, we naturally focus on what’s positive that’s missing in our lives that other people have when comparing our situation with someone else’s. Unfortunately, that means we miss all of the behind the scenes struggles that many people often endure even though they seemingly have amazing lives to people looking in from the outside.
2. You are in charge of your own holiday joy. You can look to others to determine your mood during the holidays or you can make it the best version of amazing possible! Be the positive person everyone wants to be around during this special time of year. Your optimism is contagious!
3. Don’t live in the past, unless it was a good one. Traditions are amazing experiences to pass on to the next generation when the memories connected with them are good ones. Sometimes a painful past means there aren’t any established traditions worth passing on. That’s when you make your own new traditions, and since you’re the author of these new traditions, they can have your personality written all over them! Do you love holiday lights? Start a driving tour to look at the lights with your friends. Do you love baking? Set up an annual holiday baking day with your loved ones. Do you love serving others? Organize a group to serve a meal at your local homeless shelter. It’s never too late to start a new tradition. If you’re stumped on unique ideas for new traditions, check this page out.
In summary: don’t compare yourself to others, seek joy, value traditions that you treasure, and you’re on your way to enjoying a holiday filled with joy in the midst of imperfection. <3