In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the simple keys to enjoying the Holidays.
How to Enjoy The Holidays
First a quick update:
“Top tips to avoid arguments and avoid Holiday Stress”
Listen to the radio interview I give to world famous TV personality Sally Jessy Raphael about my top nine tips, techniques and strategies to prevent arguments, fights and stress around the Holidays. I also reveal insights into the male and female traits that create hurt, pain, depression and major disappointments during the Holidays. To listen to the radio interview, checkout Easing Holiday Stress.
“What a woman wants – and how to give it to her”
Here is the ideal Holiday gift for the man in your life – your boyfriend, husband, brother, best friend or single father. My book is a makeover book for men – offering insights into women, dating, love and romance. This book also makes a great coffee table book, opening up conversation and discussion – and it is available in paperback or Ebook. “WOW. I never believed a guy actually could know about how a woman feels. I think EVERY MAN needs to read this book; there would be a lot more happy women out there if they did!” –Amber L. Age 24 –Texas; “The techniques from your book gave great guidelines for talking to women, the results have been phenomenal” Steve W. Age 35 –Ohio.
Now, let’s talk about how to enjoy the Holidays.
Recently, a reporter interviewed me for my insights and key strategies to actually enjoy the Holidays. Below is a condensed summary of my advice.
There is a saying “nothing has real meaning except the meaning we bring to it.” And it is true that the primary reason that Holidays have become stressful is because we’ve placed so many expectations around the Holidays; expectations about ourselves, others and the special day or events.
Step one to enjoying the Holidays is to review your expectations of them. Often, all of the arguments that occur over the holidays occur because someone expects someone else to do something, to be something or even to have something i.e. a gift or a specific gift.
Ask yourself “Am I having realistic expectations?” Sometimes we expect that our Holidays will feel the same way that they did when we were a child and they can’t because we’re not a child and our parents aren’t looking after us and yes, we now have responsibilities. So, we need to reframe, readjust and fine-tune our expectations.
Step two to enjoying the Holidays is to find balance by removing the sense of obligation. We can find balance amongst the commercialization of the Holidays by seeking joy and purpose. Commercialization removes all the joy because we spend so much time feeling obligated to do things. Balance means moving away from the obligations and the commercialization of the Holiday to joy. If you are approaching the Holidays with, “I have to put up a tree; I have to buy these gifts; I have to do this, etc”, then you are not operating out of joy and purpose. You’re operating out of fear and obligation; fear that if it doesn’t get done something bad will happen i.e. confrontations, feelings of guilt, embarrassment, etc.
You might respond by saying, “Well, I do have to buy a certain amount of gifts and I do have to decorate the house, or do other chores or tasks, cooking, cleaning, etc.” But if you view it entirely as an obligation, then you cannot have joy. And this applies to every aspect of our life. If you approach work every day with “Oh, I must do this; I should do this; I have to do this,” then you are removing all the joy, and eventually replacing it with resentment, frustration and bitterness.
Instead consider asking yourself, “How can I bring more joy to this? How can I have fun doing this task?” In tangible terms, you now reframe your perception or perspective away from, “Oh, this is going to take me hours to do,” to, “How much joy will this bring to the people that are going to be involved in this?” For example, if you are putting up a tree and decorations, you can focus now on the joy that everyone is going to get from the tree and decorations rather than focusing on yourself and thinking “Oh, I can’t be bothered. Oh, I prefer to be doing something else.” So when you start to think about other people, it changes the way you feel when you are thinking about how you can bring joy and happiness and satisfaction and meaning to your friends and loved ones.
Thus we need to balance the commercialization with the meaning of the Holidays.
Even if you’re not a religious or a spiritual person, you can still choose to give meaning to the Holidays in terms of a time to stop, to take a break, to rest and to think about, “Well, who am I grateful for in my life?” You can review the past year and say, “Well, how have I lived my life this past year and what did I do that I really liked? What did I do that I didn’t like and that I now wish to change for the coming year?” The reason we feel such magic on Christmas Day is because it’s probably one of the only days of the year that all the shops are closed and we actually stop and do nothing. Unlike some other annual celebrations, the Holidays is more about family than it is about partying or celebrating. Thus, when we can get to slow down and feel like we are actually stopping time, then we’re able to experience more inner peace, which is the whole intention of meditation, yoga and other practices: to calm the mind, calm the body and enjoy the moment.
The point here is to be able to really find more meaning in the Holidays beyond the giving of gifts and the decorating and the obligatory visits to other family members or relatives. Each one of us can find meaning within the holidays; our own meaning. It doesn’t have to be religious or spiritual but it can be spiritual in the sense of getting more in touch with gratitude and appreciation; really stopping and becoming more aware of how you’re living your life and what brings you real joy so you can make adjustments and fine-tuning to get more pleasure and more joy out of your life.
Accordingly, the key here is about actually enjoying the process; learning to enjoy every process in life even if it means decorating, cooking, cleaning, shopping, putting up a tree, setting up the Menorah, etc. We need to look for the ways to enjoy the process because life is a process.
And while you seek ways to bring joy to other people, beware of becoming a martyr and losing all sense of joy. When you are focusing on the joy for the other person, it removes your resistance and you, too, can get more joy out of bringing joy to other people.
How do we bring joy to others without becoming a martyr?
If you’re truly tired, if you’re rundown, if you’re ill or you have certain other commitments, then that is the time to say, “Look, I cannot do this. I’m not in a position to do this task or to follow through.” That’s when it’s not about being selfish; It’s about knowing when it’s appropriate to put yourself first, whether it’s your mental health, emotional health, physical health or even your spiritual health.
There is a difference between putting yourself first and being selfish. The later refers to behavior that discards the thoughts & feelings of others as well as the consequences.
However, whatever you do, beware of approaching it with guilt, a negative emotion. That even applies to food.
If you’re going to eat or indulge in rich and fatty foods, desserts and candies, then you might as well enjoy it or don’t do it at all. The worst thing that anyone can do is to eat something and then condemn it after they’ve eaten because that takes away all the pleasure you just experienced from eating it. Remember, to eat slowly because it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to register that your stomach is full. So eat slowly and whatever you’re going to eat, enjoy it because you’re better off walking away and saying, “Wow, that was a 600-calorie cheesecake but it tasted great.” And then walk away with joy.
Oh, and you can always say “no thank you!”
If you want more confidence to say no and be true to yourself then use my CD or MP3 file: “Supreme Self-Confidence”.
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & Clinical Hypnotherapist
Anointed “The Woman Expert” by WGN Chicago, Patrick Wanis PhD is a renowned Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert who developed SRTT therapy (Subconscious Rapid Transformation Technique) and is teaching it to other practitioners. Wanis’ clientele ranges from celebrities and CEOs to housewives and teenagers. CNN, BBC, FOX News, MSNBC & major news outlets worldwide consult Wanis for his expert insights and analysis on sexuality, human behavior and women’s issues. Wanis is the first person ever to do hypnotherapy on national TV – on the Montel Williams show.