Life comes in seasons. Some years are wonderful with few worries and plenty of everything. Others are leaner, more troublesome, and just plain sad. In the good years, the holidays are a lot of fun, but during the sad times, we may not enjoy Christmas all that much, and that my friends, is ok.
We don’t get to choose when some seasons will hit us and just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean bad things won’t happen in our lives. We could be going through our first holidays without a loved one or a family member moved too far away to see them for your usual traditions. Changes in our traditions make it even more difficult to enjoy your Christmas.
There’s a lot of pressure put on us to put on a smile be “merry and bright” during the holidays. We’re magically supposed to be in a good mood on Christmas no matter what’s going on in our lives or around us. Yes, you should hide your pain and sorrow and smile through the tears for your kids. Of course, you don’t want to ruin Christmas for those around you. But let’s face it, sometimes life sucks and when it happens around Christmas, it’s hard to put on a show of good cheer.
There’s nothing wrong with being sad around the holidays. If you’re recently lost a loved one and are facing your first Christmas without them, it’s perfectly normal and healthy to be sad. You miss them, and not being able to share such a wonderful time of the year with this special person makes it harder to feel joy and happiness. When something does put a smile on your face, you may even feel guilty.
Maybe you lost your job a few weeks ago and can’t give your kids the gifts they’ve been asking Santa for. Maybe a relationship fell apart and you’re still trying to figure out what your life looks like now. Lots of different things can happen that will take a lot of the joy out of Christmas. And that’s ok.
Despite the picture TV shows, Hallmark movies, and Christmas stories paint, our troubles don’t magically go away when Christmas Eve hits. We are still grieving, broke, and feeling lost. And that’s ok. Life isn’t always perfect. It’s messy, complicated, sad, and sometimes just plain sucks – even on Christmas.
My best advice when you’re having a tough time during the holidays is this. Don’t feel pressured to put yourself in a good mood. Don’t expect to feel better all of sudden. Get through the Holidays the best you can. Do what you need to do for any little ones, and then go and have a good cry. Be mad, be sad, or be angry. Feel what you need to feel to get through this hard period in life.
Reach out and tell people what you are going through. Don’t talk about it non-stop, but bring your close circle in to help you with your pain. They will obviously know something is going on when you are not your usual self, so don’t hide it. Let them help you. If necessary, ask them to help you create a new tradition this year to help you take your mind off the issue even for just a little bit.
But also remember this, things will look up and there are many happy days and happy Christmases ahead. Remember the good times and know in your heart that better times are yet to come.
Happiness is a choice. Live with no regrets,
PS – Download my free report Reduce Stress During The Holiday Season.