Have the Best Christmas Ever (Bonus: Avoid Holiday Drama)

 Ask yourself these questions and have the best Christmas ever!

Ask:  What do I REALLY want this Christmas?

As the big day approaches and you’re busy wrapping up work and presents, it pays to pause and really consider what you want out of the holiday this year -- and what you don’t want!

Feeling a sense of obligation?  Feeling overscheduled?  What could you do to keep up with traditions and be true to yourself at the same time?  What new traditions could you create?  What could you say no to?  What could you do to give yourself a well-deserved break and unwind on what is your holiday?

If you had no constraints, what would your best ever Christmas look like?

In the end, consider what the holidays mean to you, keep it in focus and stay true to that.

Ask:  What will it mean for me to spend time with loved ones?

Planning early can help to ensure a successful, more relaxed process.  Consider the schedules of your family members where possible.  In the end, people will vote with their feet.  Enjoy the company you will be keeping.

Try not to be attached to outcomes.  Cancellations, illnesses and bad weather do happen.  After all, we have the Canadian winter to contend with!

Besides coordinating complex schedules and unpredictable weather, sometimes the holidays have a way of bringing up unresolved emotions or conflicting values.  When your brother-in-law starts praising a political leader who makes your skin crawl (you know it’s going to happen this year), resist the urge to fight back.  Instead, take a sip of egg nog or champagne, take a breath, and comment on the beautiful wintery scene outside.  Put aside friction, worries and difficult feelings and see each person with wonder, curiosity and forgiving eyes.

Ask:  What are my beliefs about money?

Perhaps you grew up being taught that money was to be saved and not spent, maybe you tend to spend past your means, or perhaps you don’t have any hang-ups about spending on others or on yourself.  Release the beliefs about money that no longer serve you and do what feels right.  Giving to others freely (whatever you can afford) can bring magic to the eyes of someone else – especially someone in need or someone not expecting it.

Originally, Christmas gifts were a way to celebrate the birth of Jesus; now, it can also be a celebration of the receiver, to honour them with something that brings them joy.  But whether you exchange gifts or not, time spent with family and friends in laughter and warmth may be the greatest gift of all.

Ask: How could I experience this Christmas differently?

If you have tended to view Christmas as an overdone, commercially-driven time, or you’ve felt too busy to enjoy it, try this: 

See Christmas through a child’s eyes -- full of delight in each snowflake, each ornament, each treat!

Stop.  Chew.  Really taste that turkey and cranberries – as if for the first time.  And give thanks for the blessing of life, loved ones, and all that is good in the world.

Have a Merry Christmas – one that is custom designed for you, by you!

Lisa Petsinis is a Career and Life Coach.  Find out more about her services and sign up for her newsletter at www.lisapetsinis.com.  Contact her for a complimentary call and jumpstart the changes you want in your life today.