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To be jolly fa la la la la….la la la la!!

 

Yes…for many this time of year is joyous and wonderful and magical. But for others, it is definitely not the happiest time of year. In fact, it’s a difficult time for many.  Lots of us experience heightened stress about money, family, love relationships, SAD (seasonal affective disorder) and depression.  We are bombarded by happy images of what we are supposed to do or be or feel during this “wonderful” time of the year!

 

I think the real message of the season is sometimes lost amid all of the images and the hype about the way things are supposed to be. So what is this holiday season really about?!? Well, as I see it, it’s all about giving and gratitude.

 

The giving doesn’t have to be a “gift” and the gratitude does not have to be for receiving a “gift”.  We can give in so many other ways. We can give our love and friendship to our friends and our family.  We can give of our time and support to those who are in need. And we can give our joyful spirit to those in need of cheer.

 

We can also find ways to give to ourselves. We can allow ourselves the time and space to relax….to take perhaps a well needed break from our usual daily grind. Quiet time just for ourselves to read, meditate, walk, watch a movie or float away in a nice warm bubble bath. 🙂 Whatever it is…we can take time and give to ourselves without feeling that we are being selfish.

 

And we can be grateful for the small things. To have the time to share with those we care about and that they have the time for us, as well. We can be grateful for the busy job that can at times be frustrating but also gives us a wonderful sense of purpose and satisfaction.  We can even be grateful for the cold wet weather that makes us appreciate spring and summer that much more. 🙂

 

There are times when bad things do happen and they are truly awful.  While not always, one can often find something to be grateful for.