This past week I had such holiday fun and joy being with several wonderful groups of friends to celebrate the spirit of the season. Holidays can bring out the best (and sometimes less than the best) in people. Some folks are facing their first holiday season since a divorce, others have recently lost close friends or family members, some are facing a very hard year financially, and others have recently felt stinging rejection from friends or colleagues. A few observations I want to share for each of us to remember, as many, due to these experiences, are struggling with self-doubt, loss, and depression which are heightened this time of year:
- Remember our manners. When we are asked to a party or other holiday gathering, be courteous. RSVP or regret, as the invitation requests. Don’t show up empty handed. Show appreciation for the generosity of your host. Offer a helping hand, yet don’t hover. Say thank you – before and after. Introduce others. Find common ground for others when you introduce them. Be sincere and interested. Smile. Laugh often. Be exceedingly kind.
- Meet people where they are. It is always about the other person, not about us. Accept. Listen and love. They may not be where you are – on many fronts. Know this and embrace this.
- Gratitude is king. All of us are not ‘where we were’ last year. Many have progressed. Others, not so much. Again, on a multitude of fronts. One does not have to look far to realize how much we have to be grateful. So, when we are feeling low for any reason – let’s remember those things and remind those we love of the same.