The holidays are upon us, and the best gift you could give is your presence and gratitude. This is an opportunity for growth, so here's how to make the most of it.
It is that time of year again when the holidays are upon us, giving us the opportunity to show gratitude and spend time with the ones that we love. If you’ve been following me for a while, then you know this is something I have been talking about for weeks.
Lately, I have been working on becoming more self-aware to spend more of my time focused on the things in my life that I am most grateful for. I have also spent my time building and strengthening the relationships in my life.
I know for many, the holidays can be a tough time, and the idea of spending it with family may not be at the top of your wish list. Instead of worrying about how the holidays will turn out, think of it as an opportunity. This is your chance to grow as a person, find things you are thankful for that you may not have realized you even had. Create connections with the people in your life and strengthen the bonds that may have been weakening. This is an opportunity to put personal growth that you have accomplished in the past year in action.
Showing Gratitude, Presence, and Healthy Habits
The holiday season can often bring stress, as we have a lot going on as we are out shopping for our loved ones and planning family gatherings. This time of year is hectic for most of us, and it can take us away from what really matters and the things we should really be focused on.
Instead of letting the holidays stress us out, we should use it as an opportunity to show gratitude for the people in our lives and practice presence and mindfulness. With so much going on, we forget to slow down and just be in the moment.
I’ve spent a lot of time talking about how to remain present, and the holidays are the perfect opportunity to put this to the test. Take the time to build relationships with the people you may be disconnected from throughout the majority of the year, and allow yourself to just be there in the moment.
You know you won’t be getting many emails, and you’re phone won’t be going off as much, so put it away. Put your phone away and let yourself just be present. This is the greatest gift you could give to those in your life.
The holidays are full of opportunities.
With the holiday season, you will most likely be around people who trigger you. Call it cliche, but we all have someone in our family that triggers us and may potentially not think as you do. This is an excellent opportunity to be present and strengthen your relationship with that person. Learn to listen to that person and learn to appreciate them for who they are.
We are shaped by our past conditioning and the experiences we have lived through, and if you had lived through the same experiences as the person who triggers you, and you had the same past conditioning, you would think the same way they do.
Sometimes, the best gift we can give to others is just to listen to them. Not talk about ourselves, or make small talk, but actually listen to what they have to say.
Too often, when we don’t agree with someone, or we are faced with a person who triggers us, or perhaps we just don’t have anything in common with them, and we stop listening. We stop listening to what they really have to say, and the conversation goes nowhere. Instead, listen to what they have to say and work on building that relationship. Be present with that person, and be grateful for the time you have.
I’ve been spending a lot of time lately, learning how the mind works, and I realize that every day, our thoughts are the same as the day before. But, if we want to grow, we need to dig deeper, be more present, and understand that our thoughts and beliefs are just a result of past conditioning.
I spend a lot of time reflecting and digging deep, every day and one of my favorite times to do this is during lunch. Almost every day, I go to True Foods, and I watch people that are walking around outside. As the holidays approach, stores are getting busier and busier, and I can’t help but look at each individual and realize that they too are a conditioned human being. This is when I get super present, and I realize just how lucky I am to be in the middle of other complex people. I realize that each of us has problems, yet we are all so much bigger than these problems. We are all here on this planet, at this moment, and it really makes you grateful. This his how I find gratitude and make myself present.
This holiday you can apply this same concept, even if you are surrounded by those you may otherwise trigger you. Remember, these family members are also complex humans with their own past conditioning. Life is short, and you should use this opportunity to strengthen your relationships and learn to listen to one another. Be grateful for those around you, no matter who they are.