In many ways, it’s been a hard year – a hard few months even … from earthquakes to hurricanes to shootings to political unrest. You may be feeling weary. Or maybe your hope is waning and it’s hard to think about being cheery for the holidays this year. Here are a few ideas to help kindle some holiday spirit, even when your spirit is broken:
FOCUS IN ON THE THINGS WORTH CELEBRATING
What are you most thankful for? What’s something you hoped and prayed for that you now have? What’s the truth that you can always come back to as an anchor when your heart feels tossed in crazy waves? Who are the people who’ve shown you deep love? Where do you place your faith?
The answers to these questions are things worth celebrating! Focus in on them and on how blessed you are! It’s hard to feel down when you’re so full of gratitude and truth that brings you peace.
BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER & SHARE YOUR HOPE
When you scroll through your Facebook newsfeed or flip on the TV, our world can seem pretty divided. But togetherness is one of the loveliest things about this time of year! You can be the agent that brings a sense of unity in your family or community. Invite people over. Especially those friends and relatives who know how to bring life to a party. Create a sweet atmosphere. Talk about the things that make you hopeful.
In fact, when everyone’s over, make space in the conversation for each person to share the things that make them hopeful. All of that hope will spark little lights in the hearts of everyone listening.
And if you need more party planning inspiration, check out this article full of ideas for hosting the perfect holiday party.
AS MR. ROGERS ONCE SAID, “LOOK FOR THE HELPERS” … AND JOIN THEM.
As I mentioned in the article, “How to Have Peace in a Bad News World,” no matter how dark the situations we look at seem, there are always helpers. Sit down in a quiet place and try to pinpoint what’s been happening that’s robbing you of joy. Maybe you’ll realize that one particular situation or injustice is just hard for you to process. That realization is key.
Find out who’s helping solve that problem and join them! It may be a nonprofit or a church group or a senator … or maybe you’ll be the one to rally your friends to help in some way. Either way, nothing will kick the feeling of hopelessness like being part of the solution.
CREATE SOMETHING TO GIVE
If there’s one thing that sad, evil occurrences have in common, it’s destruction. Whether it’s a terrorist seeking to destroy our sense of safety, a hurricane whipping through, tearing through homes or even an argument destroying the calm that was once in a home, experiencing destruction can dampen our spirits.
So this holiday season create something to give back to the world! Write the children’s book you’ve been thinking about for years. Reduce waste by buying a secondhand piece of furniture and fixing it up. Create a new nightly ritual that helps your mind transition to peace before you sleep – it’s a gift you can give yourself!
AND WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS … MUSIC.
It’s the quickest way to shift the mood in a room … or in your heart. So put together the happiest holiday playlist you possibly can and blast it!