Christmas is the most peaceful and joyful time of the year for me. First and foremost, it’s what Christmas is about to me. It’s peace in my heart because I have God in my life to give me love and guidance. Second, I have the opportunity to share that love, peace and joy with others.
Being the humans that we are, we sometimes make things more complicated than they need to be. Christmas time has traditionally been a very active season of purchasing or making presents, planning parties, decorating, traveling and of course working. It can be a time when some may get overwhelmed having unrealistic expectations of themselves and others and become depressed.
In the nursing profession, work takes a great deal of energy, concentration, time, and skill in applying knowledge to what we say and do to/for everyone. I, for one, am exhausted at the end of my day and still have to find more energy to do everything else that is on my ‘to do list.’
I work for personal fulfillment because of the love of what I do. Of course, I like the income too! I have goals to achieve and I like the feeling of contributing to something larger than myself. At Christmas time I take the opportunity to find joy and peace in my job even though there is extra hustle and stress around me.
I suggest that every one of us try to identify a specific goal for the Christmas season and direct daily actions and activities to that end. For example, I have a routine that I follow every morning and make sure it happens no matter what. It involves spending time with God before I get out of bed. Some days it’s more than others and that’s okay. During this time, I ask for guidance for my day to direct my thoughts and actions. I set my plan for the day with one goal of suggesting an activity that will bring others joy.
I would like to suggest that each of us try to reduce our stress during the Christmas season by:
- Think about the good qualities of people we come in contact with.
- Guide our actions to show we respect each other for what they offer to each other with regard to their value, opinions, experience and competence as individuals.
- Remember that most everyone is stressed during the holidays. Treating each other with kindness and gentleness will spread peace and joy to others and improve our surroundings.
Try some of these ideas this year during the holiday season:
Accept That You Need to Set Realistic Goals
- Don’t try to accomplish everything alone. Resist the urge to go overboard with gifts, food, and family gatherings. We can easily and quickly wear ourselves down during this season. Everything doesn’t have be done by you. Forego or get help with extra baking, cooking, gift wrapping or decking your halls. Could someone else help make the holiday bright? Let others help to make the essential parts happen and leave some time for you to relax and enjoy some of the peace and joy the season brings.
Gift yourself regularly during the season to help promote relaxation.
- Take short periods of daily exercise. It will give you an extra boost and help your mood. Get a massage. Listen to your favorite music. Plan to get adequate rest by going to bed earlier than usual and not working all night if you worked all day. Some things can wait, really. After a while it doesn’t even bother you or at least it doesn’t bother me.
Maintain healthy nutrition.
- Eliminate or reduce sugar and instead use honey. Eat well-balanced meals. Natural honey contains antioxidant and antibacterial properties that give more energy. All the increased sugar can negatively affect mood and increase fatigue during a time when we want to have joy and fun!
Reduce the use of technology when not using it for work.
- Substitute it with relaxation or family time. I wish my children were closer geographically so I could share my time with them.
Bring on The Joy and Peace of The Christmas Season and After You Can Redirect Your Thoughts on The Difference You Make in The Lives of Others!