Christmas is a difficult time for many. As the schedule is packed with activities, stress leads to family conflicts. Parties with rich foods contribute to blood sugar spikes and health challenges. Alcohol consumption increases, often in an attempt to help us feel comfortable and manage our emotions. Loneliness and disappointment are just under the surface and seek sometimes to overwhelm us. We begin to feel like a nutcracker on edge, ready to snap at the first unsuspecting victim.
Let’s face it. Despite this being “the most wonderful time of the year”, most of us experience some sense of disappointment. We long for a deep intimacy that is often lacking in our relationships. We want to connect with others in a more meaningful way. The superficial nature of this season leaves us feeling hungry and unfulfilled.
This quote, from The Greatest Gift, jumped out at me.
“No one sees that you just want someone to cup your face and look into your eyes and say your name from somewhere deep inside, like a calling home, like a belonging – like a holding that has you around all the fragile places and won’t leave you.” (pg. 113)
This is what I want.
And I realize that very few human beings can supply this on a regular basis. That is what Christmas is all about. God with us. God cupping our face, looking into our eyes, and saying our name. Letting us know that He has come, for us. He is with us. God with us. Emmanuel. The perfect gift.
1) Take time for prayer, advent readings and/or spiritual activities. I have been reading The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp (author of One Thousand Gifts). It is daily inspiration for each day of Advent and it has been stirring my heart and stretching my faith.
2) Focus on people not the food, gifts or expectations. Be real, be love, be grateful. Look people in the eye and give them your time and attention. This is what they will remember you for.
3) Choose health: Keep treats and diet exceptions to a minimum. Indulge in small portions of rich foods after you have eaten your veggies and other healthy options. Eating more raw foods will help nourish and detoxify your body. Avoid seconds on sweets and treats. Focus on people instead.
4) Serve others: by volunteering at a soup kitchen, visiting a home bound neighbor or helping with a Christmas program at your church. Taking your focus off yourself can lead you to the surprised joy of Christmas.
5) Be proactive in managing stress - essential oil blends such as Stress Away, Peace & Calming, Valor and Joy are some of my daily favorites. I dab them on my wrists, rub on the soles of my feet or over my heart. I take extra Super C and NingXia Red to keep my immune system supported. I use Lavender oil to help calm me so I can sleep deeply.
6) ...Your ideas?
We can do this! Let's make this our best and most memorable Christmas yet!