4. Remember the children. Many organizations organize Santa Claus tours, plays or concerts to make Christmas at the hospital a happier time for children.
5. Plan an excursion. Buy treats that your own children can give away at a nursing home or for adults with disabilities. Tell them that people who seem different deserve a wonderful vacation, too.
6. Discover your own style. Just because your sister-in-law hosts a fancy New Years brunch buffet doesn’t mean it’s her thing. Don’t IMITATE what works for others! Instead, your style may be a shared lunch. Make it yours!
7. Take care of yourself and relax. Your body won’t thank you for the rich and indulgent party food. Too rushed to cook and eat properly? Find simple foods to easily prepare and truly nourish your spirit. Go for a walk, do yoga if you feel like it. Sit quietly and relax, without distractions: put away your phone, mp3 player, remote control, notepad …
8. Make that call. There is one person you think you cannot call. Maybe you lost contact because her husband was sick. Maybe he is fighting with a friend of yours and you did not want to take sides. Fix those fences and you too will heal.
9. Do your best, then let it go. Despite your best intentions, life will throw you a curve ball. Unexpected health surprise? Cash crisis? Don’t let them undermine all the work you’ve done. Take a deep breath, refocus, and keep trying.
Finally, a few words about forgiveness. Hearts are soft this time of year; we are ready, willing and able to forgive. First, forgive yourself and put your grudges aside. Ask others for forgiveness. What an amazing gift: “I think I hurt your feelings, I’m sorry.” Only a grinch would say no to the opportunity to reconnect on a soul-to-soul level.
Always thank God for the blessings before you, release your burdens and offer the world the gift of your renewed spirit, with love, laughter and lightness to last until 2014 and beyond. Let’s pray together for this upcoming holiday season:
Let’s go beyond ourselves.
Let’s bring light to the world
Being light in the world.
Let us serve others with joy
Let’s reach out with joy
And I am in awe
Surround ourselves with love
Spreading love in the world
Changing only ourselves
We can change the world.
“Love and light for all”