Thursday, November 21, 2013

10 Empowering Tips to Get You Through the Holidays

Sorry I'm a bit under the weather today, so I have arranged for a guest post for today. Hope you all have a wonderful day and I'll be back tomorrow with the Freebies on Friday post.

10 Empowering Tips to Get You Through the Holidays
By Amy Sherman

Empowerment is one of those words that's often tossed around, but not many people know what it really means. Consider empowerment to be an individual process, a journey or path you take in order to achieve desires and fulfillment.

During the holidays, it's especially important to feel empowered so you make healthy choices and preserve your sense of personal power.

The holiday season can be a very special, wonderful time if you maintain who you are by not compromising your values or integrity. Here are some effective tips to help you do this:

1. Know that your holiday does not have to be based on the Hollywood image of perfection. Be sure your expectations are realistic and be honest with yourself about what you can and cannot do during the season.

2. Take a mental, physical and emotional break every once in a while so you can enjoy the festivities and feel revitalized. You need to recoup and recharge, so give yourself some quiet time. Escape to a room, take a ride, or walk around the neighborhood. Whatever you do, you're doing it because it will make a significant difference in your outlook when you return. It is very empowering to know you can decide HOW you feel, no matter what the circumstances.

3. Don't try to do everything alone. Get everyone to help by breaking down the tasks so that things become more manageable for you. Try not to control or get involved in how they "do things" so that there's less pressure on you.

4. Holiday time is associated with family togetherness. If the dynamic of your family changed because of strained relations, fragmentation, or death, you may have to create a new tradition that will redefine your family shared time and give you new, more positive memories.

5. Your sense of humor is very important. Use humor to relieve your stress. So, look at the lighter side of things and laugh, joke and be silly. Remember to not take yourself or the situation too seriously. That will only upset your mood and compromise your peace and harmony. Laugh and you'll feel much better.

6. Stop complaining or falling into patterns of criticism, defensiveness and even withdrawal. If you must complain, complain constructively, focusing on resolution and compromise. Your intent is not to hurt anybody on purpose, but to express yourself so your feelings are understood. Be sure your communication is clear and concise and not focused on blame.

7. Refuse to be a prisoner of other people's expectations. You can do less and still feel good about what you've done.

8. Be grateful for all you do have during the holidays. No matter how annoying, anxious or dissatisfied you are with things, make your holiday experience as pleasant as possible. It's in your own best interest to experience a joyful, not dreadful holiday.

9. Get rid of your desire to change people (friends/family). Acceptance is the only way to go so you won't feel frustrated. Look at those people who need "help", not as projects, but as characters in a movie. However, their lives turn out is under their direction.

10. Plan on making the holiday great. Use words like, "best," "terrific," "wonderful" to describe how you'd like your holiday season to be. Visualize yourself feeling relaxed and being appreciated. By pre-programming how you'd like it to be, you are setting the stage for it to happen. Then sit back and enjoy the festivities.

The holiday season brings together families and friends at a time when thoughts and deeds are focused on charity and good will. Through enjoyment, affection and an open heart, your holiday can be all you hope it to be and much more!

Amy Sherman, LMHC, is a licensed mental health counselor in private practice. She is the author of "Distress-Free Aging: A Boomer's Guide to Creating a Fulfilled and Purposeful Life." Visit and receive a Special Report on Overcoming Adversity when you sign up for the free eNewsletter. Amy can be reached at 561-281-2975.

Article Source:  10 Empowering Tips to Get You Through the Holidays

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