Choose to see the wonderful: Holiday Withdrawal #ctstw

In Uncategorized on December 17, 2013 at 3:36 am

I’ve written a lot about myself: my introversion, my struggles with depression, and (most recently) my happiness project. Correction, then. I write mostly about myself. It’s free therapy for me, and (I tell myself) that my words may be helpful or entertaining to others. My happiness project for the last two months focused on the power of my words to foster happiness in myself and others. For the next two months, I am going to choose to see the wonderful in everyday happenings.

Oddly, choosing to see the wonderful proves difficult for me during the days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This time of year, when everything is on sale, tinsel-strewn, dipped in lights, and packed in family-sized boxes: it’s easy for me to feel a little withdrawn. It’s not an uncommon phenomenon, but it’s rarely discussed openly and seriously. Common wisdom tells those of us with the “holiday blues” to surround ourselves with people and brown paper packages and warm woolen mittens to pull us out of the withdrawn feelings.

But, this year…..I am choosing to see the wonderful in the way I handle the holidays. I have to; otherwise, I will spend the entire Christmas season alternating between feeling “blue” and feeling bad for feeling blue. But, this year…..I am going to break that cycle and give myself permission to be myself. And, that means that I have to be honest with myself.

1. Holiday shopping and gifting stresses me out. But, you know what doesn’t stress me out? Buying treats that have a use and remind people to be happy. So, instead of doing the Wal-Mart/Target 10K this holiday, I am going to buy happiness treasures.

2. Holiday parties can be stressful. I’ve been told that I’m not good at meeting new people, and that I’m not good at small talk. I can finally tell myself a glorious truth: I can be comfortable meeting new people and I can be perfectly normal (even, dare I say, charming) during small talk. But, I need breaks. It’s perfectly ok to step outside for a breath of fresh air or volunteer to go on a grocery run.

3. I LOVE Christmas lights. Like, I really love them. But, I rarely make time to go see Christmas lights in the evenings. This year? Oh, yeah! Christmas lights.

4. I really dig open fires with roasted marshmallows. Pass me those two sticks and that bit of cotton, please.

5. I enjoy conversations around said open fire.

6. Flannel! Hello….plaid flannel shirts?! Halleloo.

7. Though shopping for gifts stresses me out, wrapping gifts that other people buy is awesomely therapeutic.

The point? For those who get holiday blues…….maybe you’ve been trying to fit yourself into a mold from which you weren’t cut. Embrace the wonderful in who you are. You deserve that: say kind words to yourself and do kind things for yourself. Tell yourself glorious truths about yourself. Focus on the things you do enjoy….and do the things you enjoy.

4. I


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