De stress these holidays - and make the season bright

The holiday season can be a stressful time for many. Stress can build up trying to work out what to buy people, family issues, how long visitors stay, dealing with in-laws or friends, lack of money all contribute to stress. But there are things that you can do to help you to de stress these holidays.

One thing that we always have power over is our own attitude. Our attitude and the way we talk to ourselves, can either contribute to stress or help to reduce it. Have you ever found yourself mulling over a situation and then finding yourself getting more and more stressed? Well now... what if you were to mull over things that you enjoy, beautiful places in nature that you love to go to, music that you enjoy, looking at the garden starting to bloom, how does just even thinking of these things start to make you feel? Does your body start to unwind? I know that mine does.

Some years ago I watched Tony Robbins work with someone to help them change their attitude... he asked them to focus on what made them angry and resentful, he asked them to tell him about the situation, and as the person talked, Tony fed back all the angry responses, the person kept getting more and more angry... then - he asked them to stop and think of the first time that they had felt really loved and really happy in love and what was happening then... the person switched from their angry state to a state of peace and happiness. He then got them to think of that angry time again and kept switching the person from the angry memory to the happy memory... till the person started to laugh. Once we realise how we can talk ourselves into either emotional state, we can choose which emotion we wish to be in, by the thoughts we think and the self talk we use, and by what we keep talking about. It was an interesting exercise to watch, and it is an interesting exercise to practice.

So, what emotional state are you talking yourself into this season? Some people say they no longer decorate their house over the Christmas period because their children have grown and moved away. Some say it makes them sad to see the decorations and think of all the Christmasses past. Well sadly, by doing this, it actually makes them miss being in the present moment - a place where we can create even more wonderful memories from. But what if... what if they decided to do that decoration, even if it is for their own delight? And then enjoy the colours, the light, the fun? What if they shared the delight with passers by the house by creating joy in decorating trees at the front of the house? Have you ever seen a child's eyes light up seeing Christmas decorations? If not, I hope you do one day, it may just encourage you to decorate your tree.

We only have the present moment, the past is gone, the future not here yet. What if today, you decided to make kindness your reason for the season... what if today you made someone else's day? With a compliment, a kindness, a caring word, an offer of help, without requiring a reward? What if today you caught yourself mulling over the things that make you angry and sad, and switch to the things that you love, and enjoy? Just maybe, you may find stress leaving, a new way of thinking developing, and a bright new way of life emerging.