Guest Author - Rev. Jaclin Meade Scott
This article covers
What WORKS to get you through the holidays and
What wonít help you at all, so DONíT BOTHER.
The holiday season is here. Yuck.
You donít like holidays. Do you know why? Many people donít.
Holidays and Holy Days depress you. Always? Or is this a recent development?
WORKS. It will help you to discover the cause for these feelings. Look around the neighborhood and see who has short term small groups meeting on this topic. Sign up. Youíll be done in January.
DONíT BOTHER. If you know exactly why holidays are bad, you know whose fault it is, youíve been the victim all these years, and nothing can change any of that, you are absolutely correct. Donít do a thing.
WORKS. Get over yourself. Volunteer to serve meals to the needy, pack at the food bank, read books aloud in the pediatric ward, toy/clothing shop for a needy family (anonymously), help with a party at the retirement home or hospice, give a family with special needs kids some free babysitting, clean cages at the shelter. Spend some time with Habitat for Humanity. The time to commit to this stuff is NOW, by the way.
DONíT BOTHER. Going on vacation will seem fun at first. All youíre doing is prolonging the problem. When the problem is solved, or at least identified, youíll enjoy your time away.
DONíT BOTHER. Substance abuse makes the problem worse. Yes, it does. Junk food, sugar, alcohol, drugs, over the counter feel good pills, medicine Ė it hasnít worked in years past to solve anything. Why would you think this time will be any different? Hello?? Two exceptions here Ė chocolate and chicken soup.
WORKS. Chocolate and chicken soup with any of the things listed here that work. Make soup & share. Emergency chocolate deliveries are always welcome.
WORKS. Talk, talk, talk. Preferably not to someone as depressed as you are. Someone else. The usual recommendation here is to seek ordained clergy. This time of year, those folks are a bit overwhelmed. Try a professional counselor, grief support group or holiday support group.
WORKS. Make amends. What does this mean? Make up. Reconnect. Make more than one phone call to find the person you need to talk to. Apologize. Accept an apology. Let it go. Mend a fence. Start over. Go forward. Let bygones be bygones. Bury the hatchet. Add your favorite clichť here. Just do it.
DONíT BOTHER. Stocking up on chips and dip, sitting by yourself, watching how Hoover Dam was built, not answering the phone or checking email. If you know someone who will do this, know that an intervention is needed immediately.
WORKS. Collect people who have no family or any plans, and have a pot luck. If someone can bring something, they do. Nothing fancy. If they canít bring anything, they should come early to wrap silverware and polish glasses.
DONíT BOTHER. If youíre waiting for justice to be served, for someone to see things your way, for a chance to get revenge, consider this your wake up call. All of those things could happen tomorrow, but it wonít change you. It wonít lift your spirits, bring relief, give you peace. Knock knock. You are the only one who can change you. It starts from the inside. It starts in your brain, with the way you talk to yourself. Itís your attitude. Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with you.
WORKS. There is scientific evidence that laughter really is a very effective medicine. Watch all the funny movies you can find. Discover the Marx Brothers. Find Bill Cosbyís early comedy albums. Read Erma Bombeck or Evanovichís Stephanie Plum series. Watch the comedy channel. Call someone who makes you laugh. Go visit puppies and kitties.
WORKS. Call a halt to something going on thatís not healthy. You know what it is. It stops now. Take your life back. Break free. Get the help and support you need to get this done. If itís going to be unpleasant, suck it up. Get moving. Only you can prevent forest fires. Huh? Oh just git ĎR done.
WORKS. Prayer. Rusty? Read any Psalm to get you started. Just talk to the great Whoever you believe is out there.
The holi/Holy days will pass. If you can be better for that, then we all experience a bit of