This page of self-care tips is for everyone who finds Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day an unhappy experience. I looked for quotes that go against what most people say and think about the holiday season.
I wrote these to help you pick those strategies that seem most suitable to you. If you think you need help developing your self-care tips, consider my Online Holiday Art Coaching Group.
Most of my life’s work has been spent with people who experienced abuse, trauma, grief and tragedy. I worry that someone with unhappy, abusive, and traumatic histories might feel isolated and alone during the holidays.
You find your truth by asking yourself questions and listening to your thoughts and feelings. Part of this is what you’ve experienced. In this case, we’re talking about trauma, tragedy, grief, abuse, and harassment. These events and what you have experienced. It might surprise you to realize that the way you think and feel is normal for someone who has experienced events like yours.
There is more to your truth. Your truths also involve what you believe, need, want and think. These are often private thoughts that you don’t share with others.
Knowing your truths is one way you can make self-enhancing holiday plans.
This one takes a bit of practice. You do have to go up against your own inner rules about your feelings. You might also need to go against the feelings rules of everyone else around you.
Like I wrote above, your feelings are normal given your history. If you acknowledge your feelings, you can make plans that are more suitable to you.
Most people with painful histories judge themselves as bad and wrong for existing. I usually call this the “wrong rule.” It goes like this. I’m too fat, too thin, too tall, too short, too loud, too silent. If I think it, feel it, want it, need it, I’m wrong. And the wrong rule is simply by itself—wrong.
Instead, you want to turn this thought behavior on it’s head. Instead of judging yourself around the holiday season, find ways to make yourself right. Then find ways to self-soothe and comfort.
This one is easier than it sounds. You can pick any small are large thing you think, are or do and deliberately to yourself give yourself credit for it. When I began using this tool, I started very small. Every day, I praised myself for washing my face and brushing my teeth. There are many ways to expand this. But first you need to develop it as a habit.
So many people who have experienced abuse, neglect, abandonment, trauma, and harassment just take the blame on themselves. It’s an easy mental trick. You, probably unconsciously, think “If I’m at fault, I can change this!”
Since we cannot control other people abuse and all the rest above have never been your fault.
This requires a lot of self-talk.
For the upcoming holidays, you can listen to your wants, needs, and desires. It might take determination, but you can decide to ask yourself what you would like your holiday to be like. And then plan it just for you.
There are so many choices. Some of the possible choices will be posted here in the near future. The range is from ignoring the holidays completely to planning a holiday that matches your wants, needs and desires.
Okay, okay, I know the stores are full of holloween candy! The television is advertising halloween scary movies. And right now, halloween is everywhere. In a few weeks, Thanksgiving will be imposed upon you in advertising, on television, at work and throughout your friendships. You can tune it out. Make alternate plans for yourself. Politely say, “no” to invitations. “Thank you, but I cannot” is a simple example.
There is no right way to celebrate or not celebrate holidays. It’s a matter of finding out what is best for you. Some people find service allows them to turn their misery into moments of blessings. Others find it does the opposite.
Ask yourself what Y O U R needs are. You can ponder all of these ideas and pick the ones that are best for you.
If you belong to a church, are comfortable in church, one way to spend the holidays is to involve yourself with the church of your choice.
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