Disappointment is one of those feelings that comes to us sharply and then lingers. It may take up mental real estate or drain our energy trying to manage the feelings that come with a disappointment. It can feel even more acute at this time of the year, when we are trying to hold on to the “magic” of the holidays, or create magic for someone else. I always find the Christmas season makes me more vulnerable towards disappointment, in myself or through circumstances that get in the way of feeling the holiday spirit “What do you mean exactly when you say this is ‘out of stock’?!”.
Nowhere does this come to roost more then at work, which can feel like a real sprint to the finish line as the year closes. Getting things wrapped up for year-end (calendar or fiscal). Working to get your desk and in-box cleared out so you can relax over the extended holiday. Doing a self-review (since year end is often the kick-off to performance review and reflection in many companies). Possibly waiting to see if there is a “bonus” coming, and if there is, is it what you expected. Waiting to hear from management about additional paid time off between Christmas and New Year’s (AKA company-wide shut-down for the holidays)? “What do you mean exactly when you say we’re shutting down but you need me to be ‘available’?!”
And in the midst of all of this our personal lives are often just nuts. I went out to get groceries on Black Friday, and turned around without them when I couldn’t even get into the parking lot of my local grocery store. The chaos often starts on that weekend and doesn’t really stop until the holidays are over. Trying to find meaningful gifts for people who need nothing more then your time and attention (which is in limited supply…) also creates disappointment. Often feeling like we do not have the time or capacity to really do the holiday’s justice, and by now (mid-December) are on the path to just getting ourselves through to the big day; “What do you mean exactly by ‘Your brother needs to bring his wife’s family along for dinner on Christmas Day or they can’t come’?!”
As tempting as it is to just put your head down and plow through, intuitively you know that puts the enjoyment of this season even further from your reach. Here are a few tips to get you to the holiday break before your holiday spirit is broken.
Celebrate the season by being present for every moment, and you will experience the magic…because you are the magic.
“You are a gift. Open up, be present.” ~ Unknown