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For many people, this may be one of the strangest holiday seasons yet. Some families may be having a socially-distanced holiday or have decided to quarantine for a couple weeks before meeting. Some have even decided not to meet at all. And even for those who have chosen to gather together for the holidays, things feel…strange.

This is a tense time in our nation, for many reasons. Worry and fear abound in areas of politics, health, and finances. There’s a sense of division and unease among Americans, even among family members. How can we possibly get past all these negative feelings and try to have a somewhat normal, even comforting holiday?

Try a few of the following:

Practice Good Self-Care

If you’re feeling tense, sad, or frustrated, don’t forget to take a step back and take care of yourself. This isn’t avoidance–it is simply allowing yourself space to gain some perspective. When your nerves are frayed, you’re not going to make good decisions and your stress may end up being destructive (to both you and those around you).

Take a long walk, read a book, soak in a hot bath, sleep in–find those quiet moments where you can step away and clear your head. Do what you need to do to take care of yourself.

Connect Over Food

There are few things that can mend rifts and ease tension than comfort food. This season, make your favorite dishes and share them with others. Even if you’re not meeting in person, you can still share your cooking by dropping off a “just heat it up” dish.

Keep in Touch

There are probably people in your life whom you will not have a chance to see this holiday season. If that’s the case, make an extra effort to reach out. Write them a letter (or several!), send a customized picture postcard, give them a call, or send some flowers. Your efforts will make a difference (and these kind gestures have a way of coming back to you).

Find Commonalities

I have found that even if I am VERY different from the person sitting across the table, I can always find common ground or common interests. If you are spending time with family AND you happen to disagree with them on fundamental issues, that’s okay. Take a deep breath, put on a brave face, and make the best of the situation. Make an effort to find the things that bind you together, rather than tear you apart.

This doesn’t mean you should ignore your values (if someone is belittling or tearing down something that is truly important to you, by all means, speak up!). What it DOES mean is that you can make an effort to build a bridge, if the other person is willing. Find common interests (your kids, baking shows, hiking, etc.) and attempt to see the human side of one another.

Be Kind

Tis the season to be kind. Shovel your neighbor’s sidewalk, donate to local food banks, buy your co-workers thoughtful gifts, smile and say thank you to the over-worked cashier at the checkout. Your small acts of kindness will go a long way toward making the season brighter.

Happy holidays! Wishing you much hope, peace, and comfort this holiday season.


MARGARET SMITH IS A CAREER COACH, AUTHOR, INSIGHTS® DISCOVERY (AND DEEPER DISCOVERY) LICENSED PRACTITIONER, AND FOUNDER OF UXL. SHE HOSTS WORKSHOPS FOR PEOPLE WHO NEED CAREER OR PERSONAL GUIDANCE. 
CHECK OUT MARGARET’S ONLINE LEADERSHIP COURSE.

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happy holidays snowflake

Happy Holidays!

No matter how you’re celebrating this year, I hope your days will be filled with joy, laughter, and peace. I value your presence, and appreciate you reading my articles, newsletters, and blog posts.

I am grateful for YOU.

May the final days of 2019 be merry and bright for you and your loved ones.

As always, I’m here if you’d like to talk.

Sincerely,
Margaret

www.youexcelnow.com
margaret@youexcelnow.com

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peaceful holiday season

This holiday season, I wish you joy, peace, and camaraderie. No matter how you celebrate the holidays, I hope you are able to find the space and time to do exactly what you’d like to do.

Whether that means finding quiet time with a cup of tea and a book, spending time with your family, going to a concert, eating your favorite foods, or anything else that gives you comfort, I hope you do something for yourself this season.

This is the time for renewal and rejuvenation. Set aside a little time for YOU and step into the New Year with a light heart and a clear head.

Happiest of holidays to you,

 

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