I know you are feeling the pressure this time of year. I know you can’t escape it. There is a pressure to celebrate and to be happy. There is a call to be joyful and hopeful. Everyone says so. Because they say; “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”
Sadness and the Process
But let me tell you, it is ok to feel this sadness. This loneliness. If you’re missing someone or you regret something it is alright to cry and be sad for a bit. Your feelings are valid. You see, sometimes, it is precisely this sort of pressure to feel a certain way that triggers those other feelings. After all, we are human and we cannot feel complete without a real range of emotions.
End of year is also the time when we shed the old, ready for the new and so, in this sense it is an exercise in spring cleaning. And just like when you spring clean your room or home, a lot of dust, dirt and old stuff gets unearthed and hopefully, thrown out. In effect, there is an internal cleansing.
But, once the cleansing is done, the result is bright and clear. This is what I think will happen to you when you unload and clear your thoughts. You can and indeed need, to tell yourself that you are ready to honor the new phase. The bittersweet aspects of our lives are essential to who we are. No one really thinks that human beings are simple beings. So we should celebrate any improvement, any change for the better.
But what if we feel stuck and haven’t moved anywhere? What if everyone expects us to move on but we are still stuck in one place? We need to tell ourselves, that is ok too. We need to be gentle with ourselves and realize that we need more time. We will eventually get there, so long as we keep on moving.
Some years are harder than others. We can’t predict what the year will bring. We can’t predict what happens outside of us. The only thing we can control is our response. So care for yourself and do what nurtures you.
The essence of this piece is that we should not be pressured into feeling a certain way because it is ‘supposed’ to be this way. The main thing is to be gentle with yourself. Celebrate the small improvements, no matter how small they may be. Life is a roller coaster and you have the courage to ride it. And next year life will bring new possibilities and opportunities. So celebrate the holidays in any way that is possible. No pressure. Just simple pleasures.