Over the past few years, I have begun to feel the holidays are no fun when you are an adult. In our effort to spend time with all of the people whom we love, we have slowly progressed to an entire month long celebration where each weekend holds a new party (or two!) to attend. And of course, that means preparing a dish and buying gifts for the occasion. Yes, I have come to dread the holidays, a time I once cherished and adored. It doesn’t have to be this way though.
On the topic of holidays, Anne Wilson Schaef writes:
We see the holiday season coming and we immediately feel exhausted and overwhelmed. We have to maintain our usual workday and, in addition, shop for gifts, decorate the house, do the extra holiday baking, attend additional social functions, and look great. For some of us, “the season to be jolly” becomes the season to wipe ourselves out. As women who do too much, we have come to dread the holiday season.
This is a good year for us to stop, take stock, and see what is really important for us this season. Perhaps we love the traditions. Which ones can we continue and be healthy? Perhaps we can try asking for help and stop trying to do everything ourselves. This season we have the opportunity to let ourselves feel the meaning of peace—peace within and peace with the world.
Here is where learning to say no has come in handy. It is okay to politely decline invitations in order to keep your own sanity. It is also okay to “take the easy way out” and find ways to simplify the holidays by bringing a store-bought dish instead of making one yourself, for example. Asking for help goes a long way as well; I often forgot that I have a partner who is perfectly willing to share my burden, and no one except myself expects me to do everything. I have learned to let go of a lot—mainly my expectations of perfection—and to simply enjoy this time of year. Many of us have lost sight of the true meaning of the season, which for me is about spending time with family and those we love most. ‘Tis the season!