Archived Story

Keeping the jolly in your holly this year

Published 1:50pm Saturday, December 4, 2010

Hope you’re enjoying the holiday season so far. Now is a good time to stop and evaluate, “Am I creating the Christmas season the way I want it?” It’s so easy to get caught up in the current of others’ expectations that we forget we are in charge of our choices.

David Larson, Power for Living

Do you really want to go to that party? Do you really want to spend that much money? Do you really want to wear yourself out like that, adding more to your schedule, but not cutting from it? Do you choose to get enough rest? Do you exercise your right to say no when the activity doesn’t fit for you?

What really brings joy to your holidays? It’s crucial to live our days of celebration with conscious awareness of whether each choice enhances or distracts from the meaningfulness we seek. The biggest joy-killer of the holidays is letting the world make our choices for us, rather than choosing the way we want it to be.

To borrow a phrase from a well-known musical, “The Music Man,” use the “think system” this year: Focus on what you really want and stay focused on it to have your best chance of creating it!

Now, what about the New Year?

Here’s an exercise I’m giving my coaching clients this month. It’s a way to wrap up and let go of the current year, and welcome in the new one. Between now and Jan. 1, consider the following questions:

1. What were you tolerating in 2010 that you will no longer put up with in 2011?

2. What were your failures, losses, disappointments, discouragements and setbacks that you are willing to let go of?

3. What were your wins — successes, insights, accomplishments and celebrations that you will let yourself enjoy?

Write about these things in a journal or notebook. Then create a ritual or imagery to let go of what no longer serves you, take in the learning, receive the joys and make room for all there is to come.

Finally, here’s the cherry on top of the sundae:

4. What are the wins you want on your December 2011 list? Write them down! By writing them down, you set in motion the energy to bring them into reality.

My wish is that you take charge of how you finish this year, as well as how you will direct yourself next year to create the exceptional life you deserve. If you want help with this, give me a call. Don’t settle for less than the best. No need to.

Happy holidays, friends!

David A. Larson, licensed psychologist and life coach, may be reached at the Institute For Wellness, 507-373-7913, or at his website,