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Holiday Warning for anyone in therapy

When someone engages in deep therapy work things frequently start to change quickly and sometimes it can feel like it is not exactly for the better. When working on ourselves in therapy we start to open up to our true inner goodness, shedding layers of all that which did not serve us. That shedding is painful and honorable. Our openness allows for mindfulness and healing but it must also be protected as it leaves us vulnerable to triggers that we may not yet be consciously aware of or fully able to accept.

As we go into this year's Christmas and New Years entire weekends be aware that some not so great memories of holidays past may reveal themselves or our holidays this year may not be what we wanted or expected. We may experience difficulty forgiving others for past or present holidays ruined or marred, or perhaps ignored or absent. Being around our family of origin and/or extended family or friend groups can be difficult particularly when doing work in therapy as we are attempting to grow and change while others are not. Note that others may have values different from your own and practice allowing and commitment to your own values by not engaging in arguments.

BUT HAVE YOU MET MY MOTHER IN LAW? People are difficult and families are full of dysfunction and problems but every one of us is capable of taking a break, walking away from argument or uncomfortableness, taking a damn moment. Send loving kindness to the inner child (or teenager) whose feelings get called forth when we visit our families of origin.

Send nurturing energy to the inner child from your evolved adult self who is strong and able to disengage from conflict and get centered.

Go outside and feel the cold air on your face, maybe the snow beneath your feet - breathe - focus your attention on your breath and consciously let your thoughts go. Get in touch with the expansive interconnected awareness and remember that you are here now - in this moment - within your adult self. Honor the season by sending compassion to yourself and allow that compassion to extend to those around you as much as you can.

Remember that expectations can be spoiled but joy cannot. When we attempt to maintain present centered awareness even for a few moments we experience more joy and light because we are not stuck in the future of expectation or the past of regret or anger/ disappointment. Center yourself this season as needed and allow yourself to experience joy.

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