Peace Isn't Just For Christmas

Peace Isn’t Just For Christmas

 

~ A guest post by Jennifer Ullrich sharing how to have peace all the time. ~

 

Peace may be a big subject around Christmas but we need it all the time. Not just at Christmas. I learned some lessons about this after I almost ruined Christmas a few years ago.

It started with a negative attitude with thoughts like:

I don’t have time for all of this.

I don’t have the money to give my kids the Christmas they deserve

How can I possibly get all this done? It’s just too much!

As I marched on towards Christmas day, checking things off my to-do list, I wasn’t focused on the meaning of Christmas at all. I wasn’t enjoying anything. There was no peace. My heart was in the wrong place, and I was going through the motions.

When Christmas day finally arrived, I just wanted it to be over and my negativity spilled over to my family.

My kids said things like:

Can we just spend time together?

That’s ok, Mom, we don’t have to do that.

My family had picked up on my stress, and they were feeling it too—I was ruining Christmas.

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Power to Change

After the holidays were over, I felt guilty for not enjoying them.  I was blessed in so many ways, and yet I’d moved through the season with an ungrateful heart.

After some self-reflection, I realized that my approach to the holidays had to change. I knew I had the power to do things differently moving forward. I knew I needed to make a change inside so I could have peace every day and not just at Christmas. Do you sometimes feel this way, too?

We hear the words “joy” and “peace” a lot this time of year. But for many of us, our lives feel anything but peaceful. In our very busy and complicated world, feeling peaceful can seem like a rare luxury.

But you can experience peace in your everyday life, and this is the perfect time of year to practice. It’s easier than you think. Here’s how:

 

Self-Care

Self-care is the act of practicing small, intentional, soul-fueling actions throughout the day. A few minutes to read something spiritual, connecting with the outdoors while on a walk, spending time with someone who lifts you up and makes you laugh. Self-care is easy to do because it’s fun, and it helps you renew your spirit during what can be an otherwise chaotic time of year.

Instead of comparing ourselves to everyone around us, take the focus inward and concentrate on your own well-being. When we do this, we can navigate the holiday season with grace. And it helps us tune out all the unrealistic expectations that can creep into our thinking. Let those go!

 

Emotional Awareness

The holidays can be stressful. We have conflict within our families, or we have experienced the loss of someone we love. We have old hurts that haven’t healed, and we look back at other times in life and wish things could be like that again.

It’s common to feel strong emotions during this time of year. Be gentle with yourself. Don’t judge yourself for having sad or anxious feelings. Recognize that they’re there, rather than trying to pretend the emotions don’t exist. When we acknowledge our feelings for what they are (just feelings), they lose their power.

 

Presence

Living in the moment can be a struggle this time of year because we typically have more on our schedules than usual. But what would happen if we chose to do less this time of year so that we could turn inward and give our time and attention to the people who matter most?

When we do this, we enjoy what’s happening now, which fosters mindfulness and peace. That sounds much better than treating this time of year as a project that needs to get “done.”

When we keep self-care, emotional awareness, and being present as focal points during this time of year, we can experience harmony instead of hostility, serenity instead of discord.

 

Practice self-care, be aware of your emotions and live in the moment.

Wishing you a peaceful and joyful holiday season!

Practice self-care, be aware of your emotions and live in the moment. Click To Tweet

 

What Next

  • Do you have ideas for how to incorporate peace into your everyday life?  Please share with Jennifer in the comments below.
  • More on practicing self-care here.

 

Peace isn't just for ChristmasJennifer is a writer and teacher who shares her journey about how she simplified her life, and how it has resulted in more freedom, more time, and more peace. She writes about how to create a more organized, intentional life by getting rid of excess possessions, simplifying routines, and enjoying the every day. For more ideas about how to simplify your life, visit her at www.alifedesigned.net to download her free e-book, Design Your Life, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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9 thoughts on “Peace Isn’t Just For Christmas

  1. Excellent read and a timely post for me. With Christmas just around the corner I’m having to remind myself of the importance to just be peaceful and in the present moment. There is so much to be done during the season that it easy to get lost in all the things to do! So true when you say we don’t just need peace at Christmas time but all through the year! Love you reference self care as ‘soul fueling actions’ throughout the day!

    1. Thank you for reading, Cori. I struggle with this every year, but have realized that the most memorable Christmas holidays have been when I’ve done less and focused on being present for myself and my family. Yesterday I went for a long walk with my puppy to force myself to take a break from my to-do list. I was in a better frame of mind afterwards – it was such a nice break! I hope you’ll find ways to take care of yourself during the next couple of weeks. Merry Christmas!

  2. Jennifer,
    “…But what would happen if we chose to do less this time of year so that we could turn inward and give our time and attention to the people who matter most?”
    Contrary to what we often fear the world won’t end!
    And this “me” time, personal time, and more focussed family time doesn’t cost money. But, it costs in effort and time. Then again—that’s what it’s about!
    Thanks for sharing, Jennifer!

    1. Thank you for reading! It is so true that we sometimes feel like everything around us will crumble if we slow down and take care of ourselves. But you’re exactly right. The world won’t end! In fact, the people around us benefit when we make self-care a priority. We can then be truly there for them and live in the moment. Thanks for your comments, and Merry Christmas!

      ~Jennifer

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