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Renewing Your Holiday Spirit

The holiday season is the most generous time of year. Once we feel the hint of chill in the air, our minds and bodies gear up for the winter months. We embody the spirit of the holidays, full of compassion, kindness, and generosity. The warmth of family and friends is treasured. We recognize how fortunate we really are and open our hearts to those who are less fortunate.

  holiday_seasonAnd then January happens.

The twinkling lights are put away, Christmas trees are dragged out onto the curb to wither, and the holiday spirit seems to disappear along with the festive atmosphere of compassion and community.

Instead, we focus on our new year’s resolutions. How can I make myself better? What can I do for myself? We get back to work after our vacation, immersed again in survival mode. How will I pay my bills? How can I make more money?

Life gives us many stressors to handle on a daily basis. Balancing work, family, home, and school is difficult for so many people. This is without adding the millions of little issues (the unexpected car repair, sudden health problem, dropping and breaking your phone, etc.) that always seem to manifest during the worst of times. Our seemingly self-absorbed tunnel vision is completely understandable given life’s chaotic nature. Without the outside influence of the holidays, creating the spirit for ourselves seems too arduous and overwhelming.

If we are more mindful of being in the present, we become more cognizant of our immediate surroundings. We are able to extricate ourselves from a life of singular focus and broaden our horizons to include those around us.

We can maintain the holiday spirit throughout the entire year, giving joy not only to others, but to ourselves. We can achieve inner peace through the quality of our selfless thoughts and actions.

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As you enjoy the season, keep in mind how you can maintain the spirit of giving and the meaning of the holidays throughout the year.

Here are some tips to help you on your journey:

Just Because Gifts

Wrapping up a present for a close friend or family member doesn’t have to be a once-a-year deal. Receiving a gift (small, big, or handmade) on a “just because” basis can be even more meaningful than during the holidays, when the act is expected.

Cards and Letters

Showing the important people in your life you value them doesn’t always have to be in the form of a gift. Writing someone a special card or a handwritten letter (especially when they are so rare) can be especially valuable.

Charity

We pay extra attention to those who are less fortunate during the holidays. Continuing to donate to worthy charities and volunteering your services to various organizations is a great way to help people in need and facilitate the foundation for a healthier community.

Be Thankful

Reminders about gratitude and appreciation are abundant during the holidays. Remembering to be thankful during the rest of the year, however, can sometimes be a little too daunting. Take some time – if even for a minute – and show gratitude for all that you have.

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