21 Dec 2011

I Hate Christmas

2 Comments Christmas, Free Life Coaching Tips

Christmas is good for business! You may expect that January with all its resolutions, aspirations and goal setting would be a Life Coach’s busiest time of year. While I certainly see an increase in new clients in January, it pales in comparison to the first three weeks of December.

The truth is Christmas is HARD for many people. What I have learned in my six years as a Life Coach is just how much of a challenge this time of year is for so many people. Some clients get caught up in the stress of the season(financial stress & in-laws) and others have much deeper wounds from Christmas’s of the past. Did you know that there is a higher rate of suicide in December then any other time of the year? It is astounding to me how many people I work with that have been impacted by suicide, and struggle every year with the memory of that event on the Holiday Season.

In general the response to these things is to shut down, turn inward and spend Christmas alone. My feeling about this is simple…No wonder Christmas is hard! If you read my last blog post, you would have noted that I identified what I believe is the number one truth about Christmas…it comes along EVERY SINGLE year. Why not work on ways to face this “wonderful” time of year head on, instead of the work and emotional toll it takes to avoid it.

Avoiding the festive season means refusing to face whatever it is that troubles you most this time of year. Resistance means you don’t give yourself the opportunity to let go of the baggage from the past. When you carry that around you don’t give yourself the ultimate gift – the gift of starting anew.

It is not true that a Merry Christmas is just for some people. Christmas is here for everyone to embrace and enjoy. Be willing to take 3 small steps this year that will set you up for years to come:

Step #1
Make your I HATE Christmas list. Sit down with a blank page and write down all of the things that you hate about Christmas. Even if it seems petty and trivial write down all the things you hate about this time of year – spending too much money, overindulging, being alone, happy people on the street, fake festive carolers at the mall, missing your Dad, having to spend time with your Mom etc. etc. Push yourself to make a BIG list – don’t let yourself off the hook until you have 20 or more niggling things that you hate about Christmas.

Now that you have the big list, give yourself the gift of humour. Pick 5-8 things that are actually kind of funny when you think about it. Being able to laugh at the resistance that has built up over the years is a really good step in the direction of letting go and moving on. You might not immediately feel like laughing at the things on your list, but urge yourself to do so. Seeing how you have built up a wall against things like “stupid elves” can actually be kind of funny when you stop and think about it.

Step #2
Look at the list you’ve created and identify 3 things that no matter what are always going to be a challenge, for example facing the holidays without Dad. Now ask yourself, what you can do for yourself to honour and support that challenge. If you can’t think of anything try asking yourself “If I had a magic wand, what would I do to improve this situation?” Resist the trap of getting caught in the past here, you can’t bring Dad back, or transform your mother in law, but what can you do today that would impact your tomorrow?

Step #3
Decide this year to work on seeing Christmas differently. Eliminate the words that keep you stuck. Things like, “I hate Christmas”, or “Christmas is hard”. Work on framing things so they feel more doable. Instead say, “Christmas is a challenge, I am working on letting festive into my life, I am willing to see all the reason that people love Christmas this year.”

There really is no time like right now to work on transforming your “I hate Christmas” attitude. As your Life Coach I cannot change events of years gone by, but I can support you as you take action this year to shift yourself into a place appreciation for the Christmas season.

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Beth supports people in finding solutions to everyday problems!
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