This article is sponsored by Riley Individual, Family, and Marriage Counseling. With over 50 years of experience, they can help you overcome challenges and get back to life.
Christmas is a great time to look back on the year and take stock of where we are as individuals and families. Fred Riley, the host of Counseling On Demand, has a list of 12 challenges that will help you finish the holiday a better person.
Don’t do all 12, just pick a few that will fit you. Share this list with friends and family and start 2018 on the right foot!
Listen to the audio version of this list from the Counseling On Demand podcast!
1: Set Aside Distractions
The holiday season has so many distractions. Even more than your normally busy life. Instead of giving in to distractions, let them go. Make time instead for your personal relationships. Instead of extra shopping time, try extra time alone with people who are important to you.
Forget your differences with other people and focus on what you have in common. For just a few days, forget the conflicts in your relationships. You’ll still need to work on them in the future, but just set them aside temporarily.
Remember loved ones you’ve lost to death or distance. They can’t be with you physically but you should still remember they love you and you love them. That counts for a lot.
4: Build New Relationships
You’ll meet new people this holiday so reach beyond yourself and build a new relationship. New friendships are exciting and energizing. So make that a part of your holiday.
5: Rebuild a relationship
We all have damaged or lost relationships. Choose one, and rebuild part of it. Maybe someone mistreated you, or you mistreated someone else. Either way, do something to start the repair process.
6: Share Yourself
There are people out there who need you. So share yourself. You may have a little extra money for someone struggling financially. Or maybe you can be a friend or companion to the lonely. Share your gifts and talents.
Whatever you receive on Christmas, give more. Give more than you receive. It’s a small thing, but you help generosity be the focus of the season. Keep the balance sheet on the side of giving.
8: Find Joy In The Present
There is so much worry in the holiday. Did you get the right gift? Did you remember everyone? Find something joyful right now, don’t worry whether planned payouts of happiness will deliver the joy you need.
9: Laugh At Your Fear
Laughter is healing. We spend so much time being afraid, embarrassed or ashamed, use Christmas to laugh at the fears we have that are really silly. This will go a long way in helping you forgive yourself for your own shortcomings.
10: Stop Something
Just bring it to a halt. It can be anything. Stop taking the same route to work. Stop doing something the way you’ve always done it. If you’re feeling ambitious you can stop a bad habit. But really it doesn’t matter what it is. The point is to change.
11: Start Something
Start something that makes you happy. Something new. Keep it real, and make it small if it helps you do it.
12: Take Time To Reflect
Take note of what you did well this year. Reflect on the things that brought you happiness and joy. If your first reaction is “there’s nothing”, look closer and look smaller. What made you smile? Whose company did you enjoy? What did you do right?
You don’t have to do all of these challenges, just pick a few that stand out to you. You may still be broke from buying gifts, but you’ll also be a better person.