i’m writing this blog, mainly for myself, but i’m absolutely certain i am not the only one who’s in need of a plan of action around dealing with loved ones who challenge us and triggering situations over the holidays. you know who and what i’m talking about… the humans we love dearly, but who also know how to push every button in our playbook… the awkward, unnecessary comments from well intentioned relatives or the heated arguments over politics, religion or money… all the “taboo” topics that don’t mix well with alcohol.
see, my mom is coming into town for christmas. i love her, dearly, but like a lot of mother daughter relationships, it can be a challenge… i’m sure she’d say the same about me, by the way. and, on top of that, there have been other challenges that have revealed themselves as of recent that have thrown a bit of a curve ball into what, over the past several years has been a fairly peaceful co-parenting situation.
so, yes, i need to write out my plan of action in order to get clear on how i want to show up for my family and myself and i thought, why not share it? maybe this will help someone else, too. so, here we go…
make love our aim…
may there be only one true intention, to make love our aim and may all things arise out of this intention. i find, that if i start my day meditating, even for 5 minutes on this intention, it sets the tone for all that follows. i suggest doing this meditation once or twice a day leading up to the holidays and once, right before heading to your holiday festivities. here’s the way i like to call in love through meditation…
- close your eyes and envision yourself surrounded by a bubble of white or golden light… love. This is the kind of unconditional love that is always freely flowing to us from the universe/god. this is the highest frequency from the divine. sometimes, as i allow this love into my being, into my heart, i hear super high pitch frequencies in my ears. allow this love in. no matter how “bad” you think you are, or how unworthy or what judgements you have about yourself that day, this love does not judge, allow it into your heart.
- when you begin to feel fully immersed in this love, pull it into your heart and allow it to expand. envision the light growing within your heart.
- now, you can envision a specific person that may be the greatest source of challenge this holiday season or you can set the intention to send this love out to the holiday party, dinner or festive encounter that you will be attending… you choose. once you have the picture of the person or situation in your mind’s eye, envision the light and love from your heart either pouring into the solar plexus of the other person or pouring over the future encounter or event. focus on the pure outflow of love. let this love flow freely, hold nothing back. be the channel for the highest divine love to pour through you and feel completely connected and one with the other person or event. gently continue to focus your intention, breathing deep, long and slow inhalations and exhalations until you feel a shift within you, a lightness, a surrender.
- now, allow your vision of other to fade and turn that same love, compassion and light back on yourself. once again, surround yourself in this glowing light and allow divine love to enrapture you once more, washing away all judgements, all shame, all unworthiness. RECEIVE!
- once your heart is full, allow your visions to fade and give gratitude for your connection to the divine and to yourself for taking the time to willfully create more love within yourself and future timelines.
compassion, compassion, compassion… for self and others.
we are all human. we all have our own set of past traumas, disappointments, fears and pain, some we are conscious of and a lot, we are unconscious of, all of which we bring into the collective holiday mix and can cause us to act and react from deep wounding. if we find ourselves encountered with a situation in which something is said or done that stings, i like to remind myself that other people’s actions or judgements are a reflection of their inner world, not a true reflection of me. this helps to not take a comment or action personally, but instead, have compassion for where the other may be hurting. and if i find myself reacting, which is highly possible, because, yet again, we’re human, i extend that compassion to myself, forgive myself and refocus my energy to be able to choose again, this time from a more compassionate, less reactive, loving place.
practice a pause…
practice a pause between stimulus and response. here’s what i’ve found to be helpful… if and when someone says something that triggers me, i take a breath and pause before reacting. in fact, this breath gives us a moment to shift from reaction to response. remember our intention here is love. how would love respond? now, our ego is going to want to blame, say “how dare they” and not want to let them get away with whatever has just been said or done, but we have a choice here to choose kindness, curiosity, and love over blame, judgement and condemnation. WE NEVER LOSE ANYTHING BY LOVING. yet, we do lose ourselves and our sanity when we allow the actions of others to dictate our emotional state. love creates a peace, a harmony within. when we choose a loving response, we choose our highest self and remain in our power.
if we choose to express how we feel in this moment, choose “I” statements. examples… “i feel really uncomfortable when this topic is brought up. can we change the subject.” or “i feel really hurt after hearing that comment.” Using “I” statements that relay how a situation made us feel can allow the other person to respond with empathy rather than defensively and violà, blame be gone!
allow curiosity to lead…
we all have our own unique lens that we view the world through. it’s as unique as our fingerprint. i know, i’m my family, there are several different generations, different cultural backgrounds and completely different upbringings co-mingling together. when someone shares an opinion or view that is different from mine or one i may completely not agree with, i get curious.
i ask questions and dig deeper into what in their life has brought them to this belief or conclusion. i say, we dare to learn more about those we think we know everything about! what we discover might surprise us and bring us even closer.
i am the QUEEN of breaks! over the course of our holiday evening, you’ll find me slipping away for a few minutes here and a few minuets there, in order to reset my energy. if you need a break, take it! knowing when to walk away and take a quick breather to recenter our mind, body and spirit is medicine for the soul.
there you have it, my plan of action, filled with love and the best of human and holy intentions, all wrapped up into one. i hope your holiday is full of love, peace and compassion for all those with a beating heart, yourself included.
i love you!
Thank you this will help.
Thank you for the advise I’m going to try this to see if it will help me make it though this holiday season its been a rough year!
Healthy co-parenting is open communication and sharing information about the kids, but I disagree with physically sharing the holidays together. It’s not necessary and uncomfortable. If the kids have access to both parents then memories and traditions should be created individually, with ease, and with each extended family, in my opinion. The hurt and pain an ex has been subjected to in the public eye can’t be measured, so kindness and loving from a distance allows and forces them to fill the heart void with new and different feelings.
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