Welcome to my End of Year Countdown Reflections! Soon, the new year will be here, and you’ll be ready to dive into your resolutions. The problem is, if you don’t spend time peeking back at the prior year, you may miss the lessons that are required to bring new results in the coming year.
During the last days of the year, my short Instagram videos and blog posts will prompt you to explore what lies beneath the surface. Even a little reflecting, journaling, and paying attention to your dreams the last week of the year will impact your start to the new year.
Enjoy and share! Oh, and follow me on instagram—@dlukovich.
Reflection #1— Feeling Peaceful?
“It’s the most wonderful time . . . of the year.”
—so says Andy Williams
For all sorts of reasons, it really is. For years, my favorite part of the holidays was baking Christmas cookies with my mom and my sisters, and then adding our own children to the mix. Three generations around the kitchen table mixing ingredients, decorating bite-sized cookie shapes, and getting to eat as many broken pieces of the finished product as we wanted—the perfect cookies were saved for platters for others or locked up until Christmas Eve. The tradition represented those rare moments of peace and harmony. Homemade Bailey’s Irish Cream and red wine only intensified the warm and fuzzy feelings.
For many, the holidays bring anything but peace and joy. The death of a loved one, competition by family members for your attention, being undermined by your mother-in-law, uncles who get off on creating conflict, or spending time buying gifts for some people because that’s what you’re supposed to do, bring the opposite of peace and joy.
What if your holidays are not usually wonderful? Do you judge yourself for saying that out loud, or even thinking it? Do you look back and sigh when you realize you got sucked into the family drama again? Do you find yourself holding your breath and faking it to get to the end of the year? Why can some people just brush off these situations and others cannot?
Your anxiety can be looked at as a special invitation to shine a light on the deeper desires that have not been allowed breathe.
What Does Anxiety Want from You?
Anxiety is your body’s natural reaction to stress and is felt as fear about the future (www.healthline.com). Have you explored the deeper meaning of your anxiety and what you’re afraid of?
Could it be that anxiety is begging you to try something new?
Try This—What would happen if you just skipped going to all the family visits this year? Would the world come to an end? The root of the fear will quickly rise to the surface as you ponder this, and you will find something very old that is at the core of your fear—your wound. I knew someone whose in-laws were kinder to her than their own son. She hated the holidays because she had to watch her father-in-law undermine and belittle her husband—his own son. I suggested she explore the reasons why they kept going?
Try This—What would happen if instead of expecting your uncle to grow up, you exploded in laughter after his first attempt to stir up conflict? He has been counting on you to entertain him all these years. I guarantee that a big belly laugh will throw him off, leaving you in control of the energy in the room. Then . . . walk away with a smirk on your face.
Try This—What if you had absolutely zero expectations of anyone’s behavior over the holidays? Expectations are what cause suffering, and without them, we can avoid feel disappointed. This is a hard one because you’ll feel like you’re letting someone off the hook for not meeting basic standards, but try it out and see if you can find the wound under your neediness for someone to be who they cannot be.
Try This—What if instead of making sure your voice is heard, you just watched and listened this year? Reacting can be seen as giving away your power. Choosing when and how to respond—or not to respond—on the other hand is empowering.
In my new book, Your Soul is Talking. Are You Listening? 5 Steps to Uncovering Your Hidden Agenda, I talk about how to explore what is beneath your anxiety. It is important to realize that feeling anxiety is not your fault and it is not merely personal. Personal anxiety exists within the context of the larger systems in which we live and over which we exercise little control. Anxiety can be seen as an invitation from your unconscious to explore your deeper desires.
NOTE: The price of my e Book will go from $.99 to $4.99 January 1st and pursuant to demand, there is now a hard cover version of my book. Check out lots of reviews on Amazon.
Please give a shoutout to Alexei Maridashvili on Unsplash for her photo of anxiety.
Please give a shoutout to Toa Heftiba on Unsplash for the photo of laughing.
Help Me Help Others
Thank you for reading my writing. If you like it, please share, leave a comment, follow me on Instagram, be my friend on Facebook. If you know someone who is going through a hard time or trying to bust out of convention, buy them my book or share a link to my coaching services.