Let’s face it, we’re all seeking that long exhale of relief. Will we find it?
Our sense of relief depends on what we choose.
As 2021 winds down, it certainly seems our routines are settling a bit in terms of our day-to-day activities.
Yet our prolonged exhaustion has deepened into languishing; we’ve upped our efforts to find a bit of certainty in the chaos of the past two years — even when know certainty isn’t possible.
Time away from work. Time with family. Time just hanging around. They all sound good, right?
Yet, as a client of mine once said — tongue only partly in cheek —
‘people are involved.’
The holidays can bring a parade of people — great aunts, in-laws, neighbors, colleagues (who insist on that white elephant exchange) — with all of their opinions, expectations, irritations, and hopes.
Of course, I’m not an exception to this and neither are you.
None of us can escape the uncertainties that exist or all the feelings that come wrapped up with them.
Uncertainty is endemic to being human, yet we fight our attempts to accept this simple truth. So often we want it to be different than it is.
- Who will we see this season given differing opinions about vaccines, masking, and safety?
- What’s the kindest way to pare down our holiday dinner from 25+ guests to a handful? Will someone’s feelings still be hurt?
- Can we enjoy some downtime and rest when the world around us is on fire? I feel bad but . . .
If you haven’t guessed it by now, these questions are particular to my family, though you likely have your own tensions and questions.
As I was reflecting on the past 11 months, with an eye to 2022, there was a sense of gratitude.
Soon, three words began to swirl in my mind: Grit, Grace, & Glimmer. My version of 3G.
Let’s start with some definitions.
Merriam-Webster dictionary defines grit as: an indomitable spirit.
Courage and resolve; strength of character, getting back up after a fall. One of my clients has often said, “Grit is getting the most juice for the squeeze.”
This season, welcome a bit of ‘indomitable spirit’ to support you in choosing a limit to your commitments.
Despite feeling pressure to attend every event, or be a part of every conversation, choose the events — and people — who are most aligned with your current priorities.
Get back to what’s most important to you this season by choosing with grit.
Courteous goodwill, generosity, and simple elegance or refined movement.
They’ll be many opportunities to step into grace; acts of generosity and goodwill characterized by presence — your presence.
Presence includes attending to others AND addressing your own needs, with a touch of grace.
Set aside daily moments for yourself from a space of generosity and choose which acts of connection you’ll take on this season.
Shine faintly with a wavering light, glow, gleam, glisten.
When settled and centered in what you care about, when you’re present to the moment – you exude life!
This vibrancy glimmers and emanates out into the world, touching those around you.
Be yourself, welcoming in all things — the opinions, expectations, irritations and hopes of those around you — into an internal, open space within yourself.
There’s no need to censor, resist other’s ideas, or ‘be right’ because you hold the internal space to allow it all to pass through you.
If you’re not sure about this, choose to experiment with the idea by simply noting and observing. Whoosh, there it goes can be your mantra.
I do find myself deeply longing for that long exhalation and the relief that can accompany it. Grace reminds me that others do to.
Grit, Grace & Glimmer are calling us to face the realities of this moment and season with open eyes, an indomitable spirit, and generosity.
Let’s choose to glimmer with the welcoming, warm glow of twinkling lights on a tree.