Is a place that I know well
It’s the distance between us
And the space inside ourselves
Holidays are about gatherings & connectedness. It’s very hard for the buckets of people who feel lonely during all the festivities. Whether it’s a holiday party where you know no one or it’s your first set of holidays saturated in the grief of losing someone you love or it’s not having that special someone by your side after 6 years of dating, it can be difficult for many to get through the holidays.
Annie Lennox gets it right when she says “And the space within ourselves”. Feeling disconnected from others creates disconnectedness within ourselves. Then we begin to roll down that slippery slope of feeling not good enough or asking “What’s wrong with me?”
If you are feeling this way try to come up with some small ways to connect with yourself. Begin with your five senses and take a walk outdoors. The five senses are the quickest way to bring yourself into the present moment.
Noticing small things can be helpful; the way light reflects in a puddle, your neighbors christmas lights, making soup because the smell can be so wonderful, rereading an old favorite novel or being creative with handmade holiday cards.
Everyone requires small & medium-sized things that help anchor themselves in who they are.
If you improve a sense of connectedness within then things are less bleak. What anchors you in the world? Everyone needs to be able to answer that question. Doing things that are quietly satisfying matters.
Small things to look forward to are very helpful. Even if you decide to drive to see christmas lights alone; don’t dismiss it as if it doesn’t count because you are alone. Knowing how to be content & alone is a huge achievement in life.
I read a story in the NYT about an elderly widower who made bootleg movies & shipped them to soldiers overseas. There are so many opportunities to find meaning in life in fresh, new ways. Imagination about possibilities is one of the things I offer clients at this time of year because getting stuck is all too easy. Being choiceful is what makes us mentally healthy.
Try to imagine something different for yourself instead of riding the dramatic, seductive path of self-hatred.