Creating Your Holiday Intentions

Creating Your Holiday Intentions

I don’t know about you, but I tend to get a little anxious over the holiday season, especially if our

household is the one hosting one of the large family gatherings. I form these expectations that it

“should” be a certain way, I put pressure on that it’s my responsibility that everyone enjoys

themselves, and that things have to look “holiday perfect”. I could go on and on. Logically I know I’m

putting pressure on myself for things I really have no control over.

Is it possible to get a hold of that discomfort and do differently? How does one change the

expectations they create that just don’ serve them in any way? As coaches we know it’s possible, but it

takes work with the support of a structure. I created an exercise to help coach myself through what

resulted in a tool I use and one I’ve shared with many others that really does work!

Last year, two weeks before Thanksgiving, I took out my journal and created My Thanksgiving DayIntentions. (You can do this for any holiday or event,) I remembered the book, “The 7

Habits of Highly Effective People”, written by Stephen Covey and one of his principles is to “Begin with an End in Mind”. So with that, I asked myself, Beginning with an end in mind, what

kind of holidayexperience do I want to create for myself?”

My answers included:

~ To feel as stress free as possible

~ To share responsibilities and trust that others will lend support

~ To create a warm, enjoyable environment

~ To show love and feel connection

~ To have fun, laughter and lightheartedness

Next, I asked myself, “How will I make this happen?” (And I was clear and detailed answering this)

~ Prepare as much as I can before the guests arrive

~ Let go of the need to control everything

~ Ask for help when I need it

~ Stop to make eye contact when speaking with each person

~ Carry myself with grace and gratitude

~ Put people first vs. the need to control the environment

~ Enjoy the day as if it were my last

Next, “What do I want by the end of the weekend?” (Specifically, what did I want to feel for myself?)

~ To know I did my best to honor my intentions

~ Know I made the effort to enjoy time with each person

~ To have mental snapshots of a stress-free, relaxed “me”

~ To see that my family enjoyed themselves and they noticed that I did as well

~ To share my moments of love & gratitude toward my husband and kids

And finally, “What can I do to support my intentions?” (I was specific in my own actions here)

~ Read my journal the week before Thanksgiving

~ Read my journal the night before

~ Share my intentions with my husband and two kids

~ Anchor: Wear Mom’s ring she gave me which represents and reminds me of her optimism and

positive outlook to carry throughout the day.

This exercise works really well because it becomes a detailed blueprint. It allows you to sit and really

ponder what the holidays mean to you and what you want to experience for yourself. Take the time to

try this process today as we approach our Thanksgiving Holiday. I have already and honestly feel less