Are you enjoying the season changes and holiday preparations? Do you and/or your family have traditions that help you to do this?
For me, the holidays could once be a bit of a sore spot. Strained relationships, long distances, and travel stress could interrupt my celebratory spirit. I wouldn’t call myself a scrooge as I have always loved the season, but I did need to learn to accept everything in order to honor the whole experience. Allowing all of your feelings is pivotal in both healing and cultivating joy. Along the way, I have learned to find gratitude in some of the difficult feelings as teachers guiding us to our most authentic self and when it comes to Thanksgiving, we can’t help but think of gratitude.
When you are hurting it can be challenging to dig out your grateful suit and layer up in positivity, but holding both the disappointment and blessings is instrumental in regulating discomfort or loss. Practicing daily gratitude can support you in welcoming change rather than to resist. I have done this several ways throughout the years and wanted to share some of the projects that both my clients and I have most appreciated:
Daily gratitude journal
Keep it simple with as little as a 3 item list for the things you are grateful for or 3 wins from your day or write it out longhand in a traditional diary format
These can be a fun way to decorate too. You can make a 2D collage type image with construction paper or found branches and leaves adding what you are grateful to each or build a 3D sculptural with branches. Could use clay as the base or even a found box. So many options!
This can be a fun way to take a time out and peruse some magazines, make use of greeting cards from loved ones, and/or stroll down memory lane with photographs. Again, it’s okay if this brings up mixed emotion. Notice it, allow it to be there in your body, and let go of any story about what it means in order to move forward. Feelings are fleeting if we let them go instead of holding tightly to their meaning with our thoughts.
Gratitude altered book
I simply adore repurposing books, especially with themes of interest, i.e. I once found a photoessay book at the library titled The Power to Heal…WHAT?! So love the synchronicity of finding what we need when we need it as it was all about integrating the ancient arts with modern medicine (ah hem, Integrative Art Therapy)
Okay, there ya have it. Hope you will try some of these for yourself or your family and let us know how it goes! Leave us a comment as we love hearing from you.
P.S. In case you missed the exciting, an EcoArt Wellness Burnout Prevention Program for Healers is in the works! If you’d like to be the first to receive future tools, updates, and opportunities to make self-care a lifestyle rather than an other activity for your to-do list please click here and as always thank you for being a part of our community!