10 Tips to Being Happy This Holiday Season
While the holidays are advertised to bring us cheer, joy and gifts, what many
of us also end up with is a rack full of stress, guilt and debt. Why?
Because we listen to the negative voices in our head telling us to
buy more, eat more, visit more and do more – when we are already
stretched for time, money and energy.
self-sabotaging voices are the voices of your Inner Mean Girls and
Inner Bullies. Some call them the “inner critic,” but they are
way more personal than that! They are like the Grinch who stole
Christmas. They too will steal the joy, peace and happiness from your
You have to
be smarter than these Inner Grinches and take back your power this
holiday season so you can really soak in the joy, connection and
celebration you deserve. Following are 10 ways you can outsmart your
Inner Mean Girl or Inner Bully. And for more secrets to holiday
happiness, get a download of a free ‘holiday rescue’ call at
Worrying About What Others Think
be responsible for how everyone around you feels about how you live
your life, so stop worrying about how your family, partner and
friends will react to your choices and start getting real about how
youfeel about your life. Ask yourself, “How do I feel about…” Give yourself permission to put yourself first.
Things Because You Want To
the big “O”, Obligation. Give up the gnarly “G”, Guilt. And
make a commitment to do what you want this holiday season, even if
that means you don’t do what other people want or expect of you.
And if you do choose to do something you aren’t so jazzed about,
challenge yourself to do it from a place of love. Ask “What is it
about this action that does matter to me?” and act from that place.
It’s all about the attitude. You can choose to be a martyr and a
victim, or you can choose to be happy.
Up the Image
construct images of who we think we are and who we want the world to
see, and then attempt to live up to them. Don’t try to live up to
other people’s expectations, or for that matter your unrealistic
expectations either. If you’re low on cash this year, be okay with
that. If you aren’t feeling super happy don’t put on a fake
smile. Don’t try to impress your guy’s family or friends or fit
in to what everyone else is doing. Be yourself, exactly where you are
Boldly Express Your Unique Spin on the Holidays
Christmas wreath instead of a tree? Prefer Chinese food instead of a
turkey? Celebrate Solstice instead of Christmas, but love to light
candles at Chanukah? Like sending New Year’s cards and gifts vs
holiday cards? Love plaid pants. Tradition isn’t always better, and
it certainly doesn’t always make you happy. Be bold enough to express
the way you choose to interpret the holidays.
Know What Makes You Happy
to fit into the expectations and ideals that outside forces –
society, family, work, friends — have said you ‘should’ be in
order to be successful, happy and accepted, this holiday and ask one
really simple questions, “What really makes ME happy?” Think
about the times that you’ve been happiest during the holidays. Who
were you being? What did you have? What were you doing? Do the same
for your most unhappy times. Compare the two to your life today and
notice the gaps.
Attention To Your Emotions
We all have
emotional triggers, things that set us off or that evoke an overly
strong reaction, and the holidays are prime time for them to come up.
Pay attention to situations that make you spin, get your mad factor
going or that send you into the pool of suffering. Be the boss of
your emotions by having and taking responsibility for them, and don’t
let them drive your life. Happiness is a choice (yes, even when a
relative is driving you crazy.) Put yourself in situations that
create happiness and remove yourself from conversations and
experiences that don’t.
On What You Know Will Make You Happy, Even It’s Hard
your happiness first isn’t always easy. It often requires going
against what everyone else is doing or thinking. But if you aren’t
true to what feels right for you, even if it doesn’t fit the needs
and sensibilities of other people — parents, partners and friends
included – aren’t you just selling yourself out? You always
know what the best action is to take for you, it’s just not always
easy. Be committed to your happiness, even when it’s scary, and
even when other people don’t like it.
an Opinion and Express It
don’t like the way things are going – like the plans your family
is making or the way the holidays have created stress in the past –
speak up. Know what you believe and don’t be afraid to express it.
Happy people have convictions that come from inside their souls,
minds and hearts. They know their Truth and are willing to stand in
it, even when what they have to say makes others uncomfortable. Know
your truth deserves to be heard just because you’re you.
Others See You. Be Vulnerable.
most real self with the people around you – family, friends, and
colleagues – and let them see all of you. The strong, the weak, the
self-assured, the self-doubter, the funny and the serious. Have and
show your emotions fully – from sadness to happiness to anger and
joy. When you keep the full range of you hidden, no one can know who
you truly are, and that creates unhappiness. While it may feel scary
to be vulnerable, you’ll find that the more you show the real you,
the more others will be willing to share their authentic self too,
and the more connected and happy you’ll be.
Don’t Compare Yourself.
One of the
fastest ways to rob yourself of your joy is to compare yourself to
someone else, or to who you think you should be. Put yourself on a
Comparison Diet over the holidays. Every time you find yourself
thinking or saying a comparison, stop, change the channel in your
head and say something that you are grateful for in your life or
something that you love about yourself. Ask your friends to do the
Comparison Diet with you. You’ll all be happier.
About Christine Arylo
Christine Arylo, an m.b.a. turned
writer, speaker and teacher, is an inspirational catalyst who teaches
women how to stop being so hard on themselves. A recovering achievement
junkie and doing addict herself, Arylo is the co-founder of Inner Mean
Girl Reform School and the author of Choosing ME before WE, Every
Woman’s Guide to Life and Love www.mebeforewe.com.
Known as the “Queen of Self-Love,” Arylo created Madly in Love with ME,
the international day of self-love (Feb 13), dedicated to making
self-love a tangible reality for women and girls around the world. www.madlyinlovewithme.com
I just wrote about this too. Letting go is so important. Surround yourself with people who won’t judge and who make you happy. So many people dread holidays because of expectations. It’s time to just let go…and be you.