It’s December, can you believe it?! Bring on all the Christmas-y things!
I *love* Christmas. Like I love love love it! I love the Christmas music, the Christmas lights, the gift giving, the hot cocoa, the mistletoe, the holiday bustle….you name it, I love it! It’s the most magical time of the year and despite the stresses of family gatherings and the crowds (anyone else hate the crowds?! I avoid the mall at all costs and prefer to do my shopping online, but seems like every year I have to make a trip to the mall anyway!), there’s just something so joyful about the holidays.
Gift giving is definitely one of my love languages, and I’m always wanting to get people things to show them that I care about them. But even though I love giving people gifts and I love shopping for them, it can be a very stressful time of the year, as well. Yes, it is incredibly magical, but it is also a time of intense stress. I know this isn’t news to anyone, but the other day I was having an “aha-moment” where it just dawned on me that in order to be joyful this season, I have to be intentional about it. I was reminded that we to CHOOSE joy.
I have to choose to be content rather than discontent. I have to choose to be thankful for the things I have (and not focus on the things I don’t have!). I have to choose to to be joyful.
Here are five tangible ways to CHOOSE JOY this holiday season:
- Disconnect from social media. This one is harder than it sounds, especially as a blogger, but it is crucial for my mental health and for cultivating gratefulness. Scrolling through Instagram can be both inspiring and defeating; if I start to feel “less than” or envious of others, I decide it’s time to turn my phone off for awhile!
- Get ready. Sounds super simple (and maybe vain), but I feel happier and more joyful when I have makeup on, my hair done, and a cute outfit on. I don’t find it to be vanity, but for me, it’s a complete confidence boost if I’m ready and put together.
- Blast Christmas music. Christmas music gives me SO much joy. If you can’t stand it or are getting burnt out, just find the music that makes you happy and joyful!
- Get out of the house. This one is huge! Sometimes even just getting in the car to drive somewhere and back makes me feel better and it’s easier to choose joy! I’ve literally just driven to Starbucks to go through the drive thru and come back home and I’ve felt so much better. Anyone who stays at home for extended periods of time knows what I mean! (I’m talking to you ya stay at home mom/dad, work from home mom/dad, and freelancer!!)
- Do something for someone else. This always helps me feel better. One of my favorite things to do for others is to get them a cup of coffee. Ben and I often talk about how crazy it is that a good cup of coffee can literally make our day. It’s the littlest thing but it can have a huge impact! I know that personally, if someone gets coffee for me, it makes my day and I feel so special and so loved.
Wishing you all the joy this holiday season! I’m so thankful for you all!
Photography: Jordan Taylor