Celebrating Christmas Joyfully
This Christmas, surround yourself with joy. Cultivate joy in yourself and share joy with those you love. In this guide, I’ll discuss how you can reconnect with your inner child and with those around you.
Expressing Your Joy
The Christmas holiday is a literal manifestation of love and joy. Allow yourself to experience it to the fullest extent! How can you do this?:
1. Revel in childlike wonder: When we see children during the holiday season, we see their excitement and pure, open joy. Sometimes we forget that we can allow ourselves to feel that childlike wonder again. Be enthusiastic, genuinely. Be engaging. Enjoy what you love to the fullest extent. If you like to cook, follow the example of the late Julia Child. She was simply joyous while cooking. She let that love shine and she allowed herself to be authentic. Throw yourself into your passions.
2. “Make joyful noise unto the Lord:” Allow yourself to sing those Christmas songs in the car or at home with the kids. Really belt them out! Open your heart while you sing. Don’t worry what others think of you. You aren’t singing for others, you are singing for you and for the Lord!
3. Involve others in your pursuit of joy: Don’t cave to the overwhelm of the holiday season. Take a step back. Look at who surrounds you. Cultivate a trusted “inner circle.” For me, my inner circle consists of, firstly, God and Jesus. I also have set friends and family members that are in my inner circle. They are in my inner circle because I find love and joy within them that helps me to bolster my own. Allow members of your inner circle to offer you support when you need it.
4. Heal and feel deeply: Allow yourself to foster healing from the inside out by accepting problems and stress and confronting them to the best of your ability. You will sometimes find that harnessing joy is blocked by negative emotions. Remain grounded in your spiritual practice and remember that you are safe and loved in the arms of the Lord.
A Legacy of Joy
There are ways that you can cultivate joy in your everyday life, even after the holidays have passed.
● Play with your kids or grandkids. Play like your kids or grandkids. Embrace the play wholly and allow yourself to experience it.
● Quiet your mind. Meditate and pray.
● Get off of your phone, your TV, and your computer.
● Give yourself a journal prompt and start journaling. Find prompts that resonate with you. Use journaling as a way to set your intention for the day. My “Morning Journal” prompts are a great way to start the day.
● Be appreciative of others. Be appreciative of yourself.
● Spend time with those you love. Cultivate your inner circle and give and receive support.
● Enjoy the things around you; from Christmas music to eating an especially delicious and nourishing breakfast, take in your surroundings and savor them.
● Volunteer and engage with your community.
● Give and receive expressions of love from those your trust. Hug them, laugh with them, smile with them.
● Do something you’ve been afraid to do. Approach it with wonder.
● Write a personal set of “Commandments” as suggested by the wonderful Gretchen Rubin.
● Surrender to your spiritual life. Surrender to God.
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Brandy Lane Hickman, NBHWC
2B Well Integrative Health Collaborative, Owner Inspired Nutrition, National Board Certified Health Coach, Kitchen Therapy
Board President, Missouri Nutrition Alliance Non-Profit