Step 1: It is okay to NOT view your Holiday’s in the vision of others (Awareness)
The Holidays are not about recreating Hallmark card scenes in front of the fireplace or around a dinner table full of photogenic family members. The Holidays can be a confusing time, especially for Caregiver’s who take satisfaction (or avoid pain) by caring for others.
Here is a link to: 5 Useful (Hilarious) Psychological Studies About the Holiday’s
The cool thing about these studies/articles is that they have absolutely NOTHING to do with being a Caregiver; and show that these thoughts are real for all of us! Consider it a mini-mental Holiday!
Step 2: It is okay to NOT host and cater the festivities (Acceptance)
Which of these things is not like the other; which of these things just doesn’t belong?
When you are serving Others, you are often set apart from them. The same with being a Host!
My guess is that… ‘You might be a Caregiver if… you are usually the host for your family holiday events.’
Accept that your “to do” list is longer than usual and perhaps you would consider NOT “hosting or catering” the festivities. Offer your home but ask family to do a bit more this year; or take your legendary cooking and “feast producing” talents on the road to someone else’s kitchen.
The disruption in routine is well worth the ability to retreat on your own terms or to rest before it all starts!
Here is another reminder that traditions change… even for people/families NOT currently on a Caregiver-Journey… you are just as “typical” as these people… Breaking Tradition During the Holidays
Step 3: It is okay to NOT change anything! (Allowance)
It is perfectly okay to allow yourself and others to enjoy the Holiday’s on your own terms without feeling responsible for the feelings of others. There is a saying; “You can lead a horse to water…” well, you can invite family to the Holiday’s, but you can’t make them enjoy it!”
You are NOT responsible (nor in control of) the emotions of Others!
With a focus on allowance (a conscious decision to NOT be a lone-ranger on your Caregiver-journey) you might not be ready to change your Holiday routines.
Just be Aware that… and Accepting of the possibility… that you can Allow yourself to be a bit overwhelmed this year… and that’s okay too!
Allow yourself to be overwhelmed… and avoid being self-critical when it happens! Instead… “Praise Your Over-Commitment”
Over-Commitment is not just for Caregivers! Here is a pretty cool article on this all-too-common phenomenon from the perspective a Leadership Freak Praising Over-Commitment.
Happy Holiday’s and…
Thank YOU for Caring!