Before, this was usually the time of the year when you and your Ex were together, visiting relatives, sitting around the Christmas tree, enjoying the free time.
What will most likely happen this year is that happy memories will flood you, bringing you brutally back to the reality that now everything will be different.
But this is where you are mistaken – different doesn’t have to be bad.
I’ve written quite a few “holiday-survival” tips for people suffering from the consequences of a break-up over the years. Here is an example for you to read:
How To Survive The Holidays Alone
But this year I wanted to take another approach.
I’m going to give you the ONE single, best tested, and proven tip showing how to tackle the holidays as a breakup survivor.
Additionally, we will do something new – a round of gratitude. (I’ll get to that in a minute).
The Number 1 Holidays Survival Tip For “Dumpees”
There are two main problems we have to deal with as the holidays approach after a break-up:
- Too much free time, which leads to obsessive overthinking
- The inability to separate the holidays from your Ex
If you manage to control these two factors, you are more or less out of the woods.
But everyone who has been there knows that this is a huge challenge to master.
While you can try the usual precautions and remedies, like planning lots of distractions, or practicing mind-control and meditation, there will always be moments when you fall back into the same thinking patterns.
What you should do – and I cannot recommend this enough – is to re-wire the holiday memories you have with your Ex, and pursue a new way of celebrating Christmas.
Enter unknown territory by getting out of your comfort zone and return to the original meaning of the holidays – beyond all of this commercial madness.
Start to GIVE back to your local community by helping those who are in need of help.
I’m talking about soup kitchens, homeless shelters, nursing homes or hospitals.
There are websites like VolunteerMatch.org or ServeNet.org to help you find the projects and charities in your local area which best suit you and are in need of help.
I know that it is hard to do anything at the moment… even getting out of bed requires a huge amount of willpower. But you have to get out there eventually, and while you do, why not do something productive?
“GIVING HELPS PEOPLE WHO DESPERATELY NEED YOUR HELP, AND AT THE SAME TIME IT DOES SOMETHING TO YOU IN AN UNBELIEVABLY POSITIVE WAY”
Find a way to get out there and help “with your hands” as opposed to writing letters, making donations or anonymous giving.
Don’t get me wrong, these things are necessary too, but I found that it is even more effective for your break-up recovery to see the faces of those you helped personally. When you offer someone honest help, you shouldn’t expect something in return, but you CAN expect to feel very good about yourself.
It has an effect upon yourself that you shouldn’t underestimate.
You will feel needed, purposeful and energized.
Recently, during a family vacation, we came by a woman who stood in front of a food store. She stopped us and said that she needed a bar of butter to feed her children. My wife was quicker than me. She went into the store and returned with a huge bag full of various food.
When she handed it to her, the woman burst into tears, took my wife’s hand and kissed it.
It was a very intense moment, and our kids asked us lots of questions about it. They would never forget it.
What I want to say is that GIVING helps people who desperately need your help, and at the same time it does something to you in an unbelievably positive way.
And you really NEED this positive energy boost right now after your break-up. Especially now, during the holidays.
So leave your comfort zone, go out and get your hands “clean”.
A Round Of Gratitude
When you are pushed into an emotional roller-coaster after a break-up or divorce, it is so easy to lose track of the good things in your life.
They appear irrelevant, non-existent. All there is, is the loss you’ve suffered.
So it’s a good thing when we remind ourselves daily of all the things we are grateful for, the blessings in our lives.
It can help us to shift away our focus.
That is why we are doing a round of gratitude on this site, ( for the first time ever), and I’d like YOU to participate.
Let us engage in some serious soul-searching.
Let’s list 3 things that we are most grateful for right NOW in our life.
Come on, I know they exist.
It could be mundane things like thankfulness for your newest electronic toy or that the sun was shining the whole day.
Or, be thankful for meaningful things, like your health, your family or your job.
It is your choice. What’s important, however, is that you really mean it and don’t fall into “thankfulness clichés”.
Only if you mean it and feel the positive energy of gratitude will you profit from it.
After you write those 3 things in the comment-section below, I want you to write them again on an index card and carry it with you wherever you go.
Every time you feel lowi or you fall into the overthinking-trap, pull out this piece of paper and allow yourself to fully get back into gratitude-mode. Experience it consciously and see all negativity fade away.
Please don’t fall into the “I-know-that-already-trap”. Just do this. You won’t regret it.
I wish you all happy holidays and a happy new year. May it be the best year you’ve ever had, filled with self-love, acceptance, new experiences, opportunities and inspirational people.
Take care of yourself.