I had not been aware that in my tendency to minimize or avoid, what i perceived as negative emotions, I was also not noticing what actually felt really good.
Start by thinking back to previous years, what was the most enjoyable parts of previous seasons? Make sure that those things are central in your planning, in terms of how much time you spend on these, versus the parts you enjoyed the least.
At some point in life, most of us will look at where we are and what we have, and how close we are to what we imagined our life would be. Whatever we see, how we feel about it will often be connected to how we feel about ourselves.
Whether it is a memorial service for a family member, a graduation at a school, the honouring of a historical 'hero,' or the celebration of a national holiday, lets make room for all the stories, all the feelings, and all the experiences.
We cannot isolate which emotions to avoid feeling. They are all connected. If we avoid or ignore one, we risk reducing our entire range of emotional experience.
There is a way through. Grief can be approached gently, from the side. It doesn't have to be challenged head on.
The standard advice for avoiding conflict during family get togethers is to avoid discussions about religion or politics, but it’s not always that simple.
Social anxiety is an increasingly common phenomenon.Some people feel that they’ve always been this way, others feel like their fears seemed to show up unexpectedly and have affected them ever since.