My own holiday melt down happened this week. The fear of so many presents to buy just got to me. I could not relax until I had gone out and bought the majority of the presents. $1000 later, I can relax! Great.
So this article – A Buddhist Guide to Christmas – came too late for me. This time. But I’m sure it will be useful in the future.
…. it is actually possible that a person could be enlightened everywhere except around their family. ….
Our family …. remind us of our own stuckness. Of course, they could also be the ones who reminds us of our own lineage and wisdom….
Here are four simple things I try to remember during the holiday season.
1. Be stubborn about your practice: whatever practice you do to stay grounded, balance, and open, whether it is meditation or yoga or running or whatever, you have to protect your practice time with discipline at this time of year. Even 10 minutes in the morning of being with yourself and settle you down. It’s crucial. …
2. Forgive yourself: You are probably not going to handle the season perfectly. …. practice forgiveness and gentleness towards yourself, …. it’s okay to make mistakes. ….
3. When you lose it on the spot, Breathe: when you notice yourself getting caught in a stressful moment, stop and take three deep breaths before reacting. …. It’s the most advanced technique I know.
4. Practice gratitude more than you practice consumption: Before you go shopping, take a moment to recall the spirit of gratitude and think about what you are already thankful for. This may quell anxiety with the consumption process. ….. If contentment is the point of shopping, then we should remember that we already have what we need. This might quell the inherent anxiety that takes over the human mind when we try to objectify happiness in “things.” …..
But the point of these holidays is not presents. It’s our presence.