It probably seems as if the pages of summer and fall have turned so quickly, that you haven’t had time to regroup. And now the holiday season is upon you. Whatever your traditions, whatever your cultural values and rituals, when it comes to the holiday season, it’s always a celebration!
For many of you, the holiday season, along with the associated external trappings (gifts, relationships, & material things), determine your joy and your excitement. And on the other hand, for many others, the holiday season, along with the external trappings, bring sadness and disappointment. However, it is important to realize that no matter what the season, you are the ultimate determiner of your joy, your sadness, your excitement, and your disappointment.
If your emotional state is dependent on the holiday season, along with the gifts you receive or don’t receive, as well as who you are in a relationship with, not with, or whether you are not in a relationship at all; where you are, or believe you should be in life or geographically, you will probably be disappointed…not only during this holiday season, but throughout your life. And if this is the case, the holidays have nothing to do with your emotional state. It is time to realize that your joy starts with you, not with the holidays!
Too often, a state of aloneness during the holiday season is a trigger for loneliness and sadness. It is important to recognize that until you are able to be alone with yourself without falling into the pit of loneliness and sadness, you will not be able to experience joy in your life. As a matter of fact, if your joy is predicated on that man or woman in your life, or the one you don’t have in your life, especially during the holidays, you might find yourself lonely and sad three hundred sixty-five days of the year, with or without him or her.
Your expectations of being with that special someone should not be predicated on the holiday season. What happens when the holidays are over? You will ultimately find yourself alone and lonely again. However, if you seek and maintain a healthy and positive relationship with that special someone throughout the year, you won’t have to worry about your relationship going south during the holidays. And if your relationship tends to wane or no longer exist, it probably was not a relationship in the first place!
At some point in your life, you must come to decide whether you want joy or pain in your life; whether you want a healthy and lasting relationship; or if you desire to continue to perpetrate a fraud by remaining in situations going nowhere, with people who don’t want to be with you, or people you know you don’t need to be with! And you wonder why you have no joy in your life?!!
As so eloquently sang by Frankie Beverly and Mays, “Joy and pain are like sunshine and rain.” You are the ultimate determiner of your sunshine, as well as your rain. You are also the determiner of the person or persons you invite into your life or whose invitation you accept and take on their life, in order for you to continue on your journey of joy or pain.
If you choose to have joy in your life on a daily basis, there are certain characteristics that you must instill within your life on a daily basis. One of the fist and foremost characteristics is forgiving. It is imperative that you forgive yourself and forgive others. The more you carry old hurt, old misery, and old mess which no longer fits in your current realm of life, you will stay connected to and flow in the currents of pain.
As you allow your humanness to come forward, you will allow yourself and others to make mistakes. Beating yourself or others over the head for the atrocities of the past, only breed angst, animosity, bitterness, and pain. These aspects of unforgiveness are not only detrimental to you, they are detrimental your joy.
You cannot and will not experience complete and total joy until you are willing to step outside yourself to recognize that it’s not all about you! Your situation is not the only one taking place in life. As you are complaining about not having any shoes, walk a little further and you will find someone without feet; and as you continue on your journey, you will discover someone without legs. Sharing with others and caring about others are essential attributes you must engage in on a daily basis.
Sharing with others is more than the sharing of material things; it is sharing of your time, your talents, and sometimes just sharing a smile. As a matter of fact, you are much richer when you share with others. Actually, in doing so, you plant seeds for later harvests, greater than you can ever imagine!
Much of your pain has much to do with you not being yourself, living above and/or outside your means, perpetrating frauds, trying to be someone you aren’t, living somewhere you don’t belong, and driving something that you can’t afford. In other words, stop trying to keep up with the Joneses! They are probably in an even greater economic and financial transition than you! And they are also probably engaging in an even greater perpetration of life!
Trying to take on the identity of someone who looks as if they are doing extremely well can add to your stress and keep you in a pool of mess. Get over it and be yourself; what is for you is for you and no one can take it from you! You will have more joy and rid yourself of the pain associated with faking it until you make it!
Ultimately, in order for you to fully experience your joy, and rid yourself of pain, you must let go of the mess, and let go of the stress! Oil and water don’t mix; joy and pain CAN’T mix! It is time for you to close the doors of negativity. Instead of holding onto the stumbling blocks of life, begin to move to and walk on the steppingstones of life.
Let go of the mess and the stress! Take the “S” off your chest (Superwoman, Superman, and Stress). Take it and leave it in a trash receptacle. Once you have placed it there, turn your back on it, and DO NOT look back or pick it up or again!! As long as you hold doors of misery and pain open, you won’t allow doors of pleasantry and joy open. As a matter of fact, not only do you miss your joy, you miss your blessings!!!
When you realize that your joy, you excitement, your sadness, and your disappointment are internally derived, you will no longer look to external celebrations, situations, or people to determine and dictate your joy. Your joy is already right inside of you!!! Grab it and hold onto it! No one gave you your joy; do not let anyone or anything take it away!!!