While holidays like Thanksgiving or Christmas can be stressful for some, there are ways to cope and relieve some of that stress. We can create better holidays by shifting our focus to activities that have proven to be positive in our lives.
The holidays can be a mixed bag filled with both joyous and painful moments and memories. It only means you're fully human if you notice both positive and negative feelings about the holidays. For some it triggers feelings of loneliness, regrets, and grief. And even if a person intends to keep those feelings at bay in order to enjoy the season, it can remain difficult. The many nuances of being human requires some intentional "managing". You can make choices that could ease any tension and stress you feel this time of year. Keep reading to begin considering what choices you might make.
Each person must choose to care for themselves in ways that suit them best, but following is a list that could be a good *starter kit*. Maybe you choose something from this list to get yourself started:
· An activity that allows you to express your values
· Activities that relax you
· Connecting with people you care about
· Engaging in activities that cause reflection
· Spending time doing an activity that you enjoy but typically don’t have time for during busier times of the year
· Spiritual practices that help you feel connected to a purpose higher than yourself or offering yourself to serving others in some way
· Create a new holiday tradition that can be practiced by just you or with loved ones
· Practice at least one random act of kindness each day during the holiday season
Wishing you a peaceful holiday season – L. Chris Cannida, MS, LPC
** As always, if you are having thoughts of suicide or self-harm, please call the National Suicide Hotline at
1-800-273-8255 or visit www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org and click "Chat" **
Life can unfold in unexpected ways, leaving us with much emotional pain. There are negative patterns that develop which can be altered for the better if we know where to look. Because of that, I am always searching for material that might help in someone's healing journey. If you're interested in reading more on ways to heal from shame, recover from relational wounds, and improve your overall quality of life, check out what's on my bookshelf.
Not "Just Friends": Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity, Shirley P. Glass, Ph.D. - a great read for anyone affected by infidelity.
Helping Her Heal, Douglas Weiss, Ph.D. - When your spouse has decided to move toward forgiveness and reconciliation after a betrayal at your hand, knowing how to support her (or him) can play a powerful part in healing for the relationship. This book can give you much needed guidance.
Grateful for the Fight: Using Inner Conflict to Transform Yourself and Your Relationships, Viola Neufeld - Find out how you can address the conflicts within yourself to achieve personal growth and improve the quality of your relationships.
Just One Thing, Rick Hanson, Ph.D. - Neuroscientist, Dr. Rick Hanson, has compiled 52 exercises for helping us remain mindful and gain peace in our lives.
Hold Me Tight, Seven Conversations for a LifeTime of Love, Dr. Sue Johnson - Couples in all stages of their relationship will benefit from reading this book on how to create meaningful attachments.
Forgive and Forget: Healing the Hurts We Don't Deserve, Lewis B. Smedes - Learning how to remove the hardness of resentment from our hearts is the most powerful step toward healthy living!
I Thought It Was Just Me, Women Reclaiming Power and Courage in a Culture of Shame, Brene Brown - Shame is the most difficult human experience we encounter. This book may help you begin healing and free yourself from the burden of shame.
Running On Empty: Overcoming Your Childhood Emotional Neglect, Jonice Webb, Ph.D. - Dr. Webb writes about a powerful, yet often unnoticed adverse childhood effect that leaves many adults wondering why their lives seem to lack meaning, believe they should have accomplished more, or just don't feel right. If you have been wondering why you can be so accomplished in certain areas, yet feel completely unraveled in others, this book might be for you.
Boundaries of the Soul: The Practice of Jung's Psychology, by June Singer, Ph.D. - Having studied the great Swiss psychiatrist, Carl Jung, June Singer was able to articulate in the most clear way, the underlying essence of one's 'personhood'. Want to know what many therapists hold in awareness as we help you live your best lives? Though quite an undertaking, this book is rich with explanation into what Carl Jung knew to be at the core of our humanness.
Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation, by Parker J. Palmer - a master teacher and leader, Parker Palmer wrote this book about finding the way into our purpose in life. He uses his own journey through depression and vocational confusion as an example of how we create a sense of meaning in our lives.
Where Is God When It Hurts? A Comforting, Healing Guide for Coping with Hard Times, Philip Yancey - This book does a beautiful job of helping us understand the answer to this common question.
The Road Less Travelled, M. Scott Peck - Another classic from my graduate school days. An in-depth and profound look at this journey of being human.
How To Carry What Can't Be Fixed: A Journal for Grief, Megan Devine - Megan is a licensed therapist and has offered an inclusive, beautiful journal that can help anyone moving through the grieving process.
Copyright © 2017 chriscannida - All Rights Reserved.