Article - Holiday Blues by Robert Wallis

Holiday Blues
By Robert Wallis

Amidst the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, not everyone is a happy camper filled with holiday spirit. Some have issues with holidays and go through depressions and anxieties every year at this time. Some have had family losses at this time, or their finances are in such bad shape that they feel they have nothing to give, and some have emotional baggage to work out where they feel they have no connections with anyone and become even lonelier. Indeed, this is the time of year when crisis lines light up and some feel pushed to the limit.

The holidays are about the connections with family being reinforced, and yes, about connections being repaired if need be. Consider that friends are also family that you choose for yourself, so in a sense, family is a wider concept than many realize. If you have long standing problems with family, this is the time to start healing that breach, and you can be the first one to extend the olive branch of peace and healing.

Ultimately the holiday season is about healing and solidifying the bonds of family with joy and forgiveness. Thanksgiving, no matter what some may object to how it started, has evolved into what we now know and accept which is a celebration of family togetherness and connection in all its myriad forms. It is also unique in that it is a secular holiday, spiritual based but without any particular dogma. It is a universal holiday that celebrates family and community. Be thankful for what has been received rather than what was expected and you’ll have a much lower stress level.

Christmas has slowly been commercialized to the point where the gifting is the end goal. While our culture places a premium on the exchange of gifts, the cost of the gift is not the measure of success. In these economic times, it is not wise or prudent to overextend one’s self financially for the sake of a ‘good Christmas”. Too many are worried about finances and the affordability of Christmas. Consider scaling back, and do it without guilt. The old adage that the thought counts is never truer now than in these times. Hand crafted gifts, if you have the skill, are gifts that retain their emotional attachment way longer than something found at the nearest big-box store.

The key thing here is to remember what Christmas is about, and that is celebration with family of a spiritual holiday where the birth of the Christ child is about faith, redemption, and salvation. If you keep that in mind, the importance of the latest electronic gadget somehow pales in significance.

If you’re one of those people who struggle to cope with the holidays, remember what they’re about and remember that they are not truly about the commercialism that has started to shrink Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas into an orgy of buy, buy, and buy some more. It’s about far important things such as family, faith, and forgiveness.

Reach out to those around you who are disconnected and emotionally apart from others. Extend the olive branch to those who you have disagreed with. Above all, be thankful you are still here and able to reach out to others. Make a difference