At Christmas time, we all seem to take on bi-polar personalities. We find ourselves filled with passion and thrusting from extreme joy and excitement to extreme frustration and fear. Memories from the past bring warm nostalgic feelings and mournful sorrow. The gift giving tradition fills us with abundance, joy, apprehension and debt. Expectations are high, both positively and negatively. And in the end, we are often left feeling overjoyed and disappointed all at the same time.
What is it about Christmas that brings so much drama into our lives?
Relationships are where the deepest challenges of our personal character are revealed. They are magnifiers of our spiritual shortcomings and the ultimate showcase for our spiritual strengths. Even for those who will spend Christmas alone, many are plagued with a lonely reminder of relationship deficiencies and challenged by the spirit of Christmas: the essence of which is relationships with family, friends, loved ones and with God.
7 Tips for Inspired Relationships
Christmas is all about people getting together in one way or another:
- family relationships with years of history and baggage that we often choose to erase from our memories during the other 11 months of the year,
- people we see every day and relationships we take for granted which hold a challenging new significance over the holidays,
- people we hold in high esteem of whom we only see once a year, and we want to make the best of the limited time we have with them,
- people we haven’t yet met who have recently joined the lives of those we know and care about.
Here are some simple tips on how to make the best of holiday gatherings:
- Decide that you want to be happy.
- Never keep score!
- Focus on the good qualities of others.
- Disagreement is natural and healthy, but remember that if someone disagrees with you, it does not mean one of you is wrong. It just means you see things differently.
- Practice empathy.
- Practice kindness. Focus on what you can give.
- Remember that you are only the center of your universe. Everyone else has their own universe, in which they are centered.
Christmas and Inspiration
Christmas is a time when inspiration means more than at any other time. It is when the inspiring principles of kindness, forgiveness, patience, tolerance, faith and gratitude make the difference between tears of pain and frustration and tears of joy and rapture. And most of all, it is a time when the answer to the simple question, “Do I want to be happy?” will manifest with the strength of the Sun on a tropical garden or an atomic bomb in your back yard.
Choose to be happy, and have an inspired and Merry Christmas!