When you read that phrase, you probably chuckled a little and shook your head. After all, this time of year is strenuous and hectic, with everyone pulling you in different directions.
If you’re in sales or another deadline-oriented field, this time of year can be even more stressful as you work to achieve arbitrary numbers and goals. If you have a family, your busy schedule also gets more complicated because of the added challenges of managing school events, coordinating childcare, and creating holiday magic.
Pressure intensifies over the holiday season. You probably tell yourself, “This year will be different,” then find yourself right back in the holiday hustle.
There is a better way. To approach the holiday season with poise and grace, we can start by:
- Better understanding the holiday pressures we face
- Identifying their sources
- Distinguishing between self-imposed and external pressures
I use an acronym called GRACE to reflect on the holiday season – both its joys and its challenges. I’ve found it helps me to cultivate a better experience, one where I can be present, live mindfully through the season, and go into the next year with enthusiasm, focus, and high-positive energy to meet opportunities and challenges with greater poise and effectiveness.
- Gratitude (Good enough is good enough ) – Manage your expectations. When you take stock, focus on the one or two most important things and try to let go of other things you feel you should do, but are not nearly as important.
- Recovery (Rest well to Live well) – Optimize downtime to care for your health, relationships, and re-align with your purpose.
- Acceptance (Come to terms with all possible outcomes) – The holidays are fertile ground for family joy, but they can also be a hotbed for family strife. Know what you’re walking into and consider how you can come to peace with the situation, whatever might arise. That gives you power, not to resign yourself, but to accept that there are things outside of your control not worth hanging on to.
- Commitment (Make firm decisions about holiday goals) – Determine what you most want out of this holiday season, let others know, and put all your energy and intention behind it. We can be determined in the healthiest sense of the word about how we work, how we look to connect, and how we enjoy the people and things that matter most to us.
- Elimination (Be vigilant about who you let in) – Eliminate toxicity. Just because you may have to confront a family member or distant relative you wish to not be around, eliminate their toxicity by showing up with your values and putting your focus on your own wellbeing. People can’t make you feel anything until you allow it.
If you need more support during the holiday season and going forward into the new year, these resources can help get you through the holiday season and empower and fuel you to move forward.