Gratitude unlocks the fullness of the Holidays

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  - Melody Beattie

With Thanksgiving, the holiday season of 2015 has officially kicked off. From now through the new year, regardless of faith, we gather together to celebrate and come together as a community.  We express love and try to have a little bit more patience with each other during this special time. When we are doing with our shopping, we say "happy holidays" before continuing on our way.  We eat, we celebrate and we try to be merry.  

The month of December is one of the most celebratory times of the year,  and simultaneously one of the most stressful. We often set expectations on how we believe the holiday season should be, and how we should celebrate with our friends and family who we may not have seen since the year before. We expect our loved ones to treat us as we are today, not the way they did when we were kids. Due to our own attachments and demands toward these situations, we can create judgements and anxiety.  

Instead of harshly judging our families and friends and setting too many expectations during this holiday season, I suggest we try to practice gratitude and non-attachment. By replacing our own demands and visions of perfection with real, simple gratitude, we can let go and become more mindful of life's blessings. When we feel grateful for what we have and are not attached to what may or may not happen down the line, life becomes a little easier and we have a little more patience and warmth during our holidays.

With gratitude,