'Tis the Season...


With the mad dash of the holidays upon us, we’ve been thinking about how to live well with all the challenges that come up at this time of year. Whether it’s navigating relationships with relatives, or worrying about who to give what, or just trying to squeeze in sleep around all the parties, this is a seriously stress-inducing month.

How do we deal with that? Typically, when we encounter stress, our reaction is to fight the existence of whatever caused it, as though somehow if we contradict it loudly enough it will go away. It won’t, and we’ll have wasted a lot of vital energy trying to pretend it will.

The alternative to this kind of reactivity is the acceptance of reality. Acceptance doesn’t mean lying down and taking whatever happens; it means recognizing that whatever is happening, is happening, and choosing action from there. When you deeply accept the obstacle or frustration that you’re encountering, you channel your energy towards working with reality, rather than fighting it.

That simple shift has tremendous potential for you, not only mentally and emotionally, but also physically. When you’re living in acceptance, you’re not worrying. You’re not anxious. You’re not overwhelmed. You’re not spending a lot of time brooding or angry about a situation you can’t change. Instead, you experience clarity, calm, and contentment. You are much more motivated to take positive action, to show up as your best self, and to see things through to completion.

This holiday season, choose to start from a place of acceptance: of situations, people, and most of all, yourself.

Hannah Knapp