How to Pre-Pave a GREAT Holiday Season
The Holidays are coming! The Holidays are coming! I don’t know about you but, unless I’m careful, that simple fact can strike terror in my heart.
For years, I was one of those people who dreaded the Holidays. I listened, in total agreement, to news stories about how stressful they are, how commercial, how people get sick, blah, blah, blah. I’m not saying that none of that is true. However, I am living testimony that one’s experience of the Holidays can be transformed.
No matter if the Holidays are months from when you are reading this or you’re in the bathroom at your Mom’s house only seconds away from the traditional Holiday dinner, it is never too early or too late to do something about having a fun, stress-free time. It does, however, require some “pre-paving.”
What is pre-paving? It is visualizing and planning in advance the results you want. For example, in the morning, before I get out of bed, I try to remember to think about what kind of day I’d like to have. I might say something to myself like, “Today, I’d like to feel productive. I’d like things to flow smoothly and I’d like to notice it when they do.” Simple, yet powerful.
Because the Holidays are so mixed up with dramatic emotions and high expectations, it is best to start pre- paving early in order to have the results you want. You’ve been pre-paving for years, anyhow (don’t you catch yourself saying, “Darn! This happens EVERY year!”). You might as well become purposeful in doing so.
Promise, my youngest daughter came to live with me when she was 12 years old (she is adopted). That year, she spent some time over the Holidays with her birth father and she got very sick with the flu. When she came home, I heard her tell her friends (and anyone else who would listen), “Oh, I get sick every year at Christmas.” I checked with her father and he confirmed that it was true. It wasn’t surprising, certainly. She was a foster kid visiting her natural father. It was a situation laced with stress and strong emotions.
In January, I sat her down and we talked about whether she’d like to be healthy during the Holidays at the end of the year and she said, “Yes.” So I told her we would do an experiment. Every time she heard herself say, “Oh, I get sick every year at Christmas,” she would correct it and say, instead, “Oh, I used to get sick every year at Christmas but not anymore.”
She gave me permission to remind her if she slipped, which I did. I am happy to report that she’s never been sick at Christmas again. That is the power of pre-paving. It can make you sick or it can give you what you want.
EXERCISE: Here are some questions that will help you pre-pave a wonderful Holiday season:
Q: What would you like the Holidays to mean to you this year?
Q: Who would you love to spend time with during the Holidays, and why? (Answering the “why” part of the question will give you a warm feeling and remind you how wonderful the Holidays can be.)
Q: If there are people you feel obligated to spend time with (but don’t enjoy their company), what can you do to make it pleasant? (Spiking the eggnog, by the way, MIGHT make it much worse!)
Q: What Holiday rituals do you absolutely love? What new ones would you like to establish?
Q: Are there charities you’d like to support? What are they and how will you do it? Who will you enroll to do this with you?
Q: It’s January. The Holidays are over and, as you look back at the time spent with co-workers, family and friends you have a big grin on your face. What are you remembering?
I encourage you to do this exercise with co-workers, close friends and family. It is a wonderful way for everyone to start pre-paving the Holiday season. The Law of Attraction says that you get more of what you focus on. The more you can visualize what you want in order to feel good about the approaching Holidays, the more the Law of Attraction will bring to you the Holiday feelings and events that will make this the best season yet!