Making the Most of the Holidays
Embracing the Holiday Season & Making the most of the holidays: Navigating Triggers and Finding Gratitude
The holiday season can be a time of joy, celebration, and togetherness for many, but it can also evoke feelings of loneliness, overwhelm, and family challenges. In this week’s episode (Making the most of the holidays) of the Soulful Entrepreneurs podcast, coach Kavita Melwani sheds light on why this is a perfect opportunity for some deep introspection and shadow work. By understanding our triggers, examining our expectations, and practicing self-compassion, we can make the most of the holidays and create a fulfilling experience aligned with our true selves.
- Acknowledging Your Triggers:
During the holiday season, it’s important to identify the feelings and thoughts that arise within us. Whether it’s the pressure of hosting the perfect gathering or the sense of exclusion when feeling different from the traditional family image, recognizing these triggers is the first step towards addressing them.
- Giving Voice to Your Emotions:
Allow your emotions to be expressed. One effective method is journaling about what triggers you and why it bothers you. This practice helps bring awareness to your emotions, allowing you to process them and gain deeper insights into their origins.
- Embrace Shadow Work:
While journaling aids in understanding triggers, deeper healing often requires the assistance of a coach, therapist, or impartial third party. Shadow work involves exploring the underlying beliefs, fears, and wounds that contribute to our triggers and reactions. It is recommended to seek professional support to navigate this process effectively.
- Adjusting Your Expectations:
If hosting a gathering, assess why it matters to you and what expectations you have regarding gratitude and appreciation. Recognize that people may not respond as we desire, and waiting for that validation can lead to disappointment. Imagine ways to give yourself gratitude and recognition, as well as setting clear boundaries and asking for support from loved ones.
- Redefining Traditions:
If you find yourself alone during the holidays, create experiences that align with your desires and values. Volunteer, spend time with friends or chosen family, or explore different cuisines that bring you joy. Remind yourself that you have the freedom to shape your own traditions and make choices that serve your well-being.
- Applying Lessons to Your Business:
Take the insights gained from this process and apply them to your entrepreneurial journey. Clarify what you want to focus on, what results you desire, and how much time and energy you can allocate. Avoid succumbing to societal expectations and instead create a business that aligns with your values and brings you joy.
The holiday season can be a transformative time when we intentionally examine our triggers, expectations, and reactions. By doing the inner work, we empower ourselves to respond differently, create fulfilling experiences, and cultivate gratitude for ourselves and others. Remember, the holidays are an opportunity to embody the leader we were born to be and to shine our light in both our personal lives and business endeavors.
Remember, you have the power to embrace the holiday season with self-awareness, compassion, and authenticity. Allow yourself to rise up and create a joyous, purposeful, and harmonious experience for yourself and those around you. Happy holidays!
Key Topics of this Episode
Primary Topic: Making the most of the Holidays
- Importance of addressing emotions and challenges during the holiday season
- Benefits of doing shadow work during this time
Identifying triggers and feelings associated with the holidays
- Exploring thoughts and emotions related to hosting, family dynamics, and obligations
Processing emotions and triggers
- Writing down triggers and journaling about them
- Seeking support from a coach or therapist to process emotions
Understanding the concept of shadow work
- Recognizing the need to go deeper in addressing triggers and challenges
- Recommending not to do shadow work alone and seeking guidance
Changing patterns and responding differently
- Examining reactions to comments or situations during the holidays
- Identifying the underlying reasons for upset and disappointment
- Shifting focus from external validation to self-recognition and gratitude
- Considering alternatives in hosting or seeking support from others
Creating a fulfilling holiday experience
- Exploring ways to avoid loneliness and create a positive environment
- Volunteering, connecting with others, or finding alternative ways to celebrate
- Reflecting on personal desires and making choices aligned with those desires
Seeking additional support if needed
- Recommending therapy for deeper traumas or family issues
- Encouraging journaling and self-reflection as a starting point for processing emotions
Applying insights to entrepreneurship
- Relating the principles to business decision-making during the holiday season
- Considering what the desired outcomes and feelings in the business should be
- Choosing focus areas based on personal goals and priorities
- Empowering individuals to take control of their holiday experience and create meaningful connections
- Encouraging self-reflection, emotional processing, and seeking support when necessary
Analogy of what Kavita Discusses on this Episode- Making the Most of the Holidays
Imagine you’re hosting a big Thanksgiving dinner for your family and friends. You want everything to be perfect – the decorations, the food, the ambiance. But as the day progresses, you find yourself overwhelmed and frustrated. People criticize your cooking, no one offers to help, and you feel underappreciated.
Now, let’s imagine this Thanksgiving dinner is like running a business. You are the host, and your business is the dinner. Just like wanting your guests to enjoy the meal, you want your business to succeed and thrive. But sometimes, things don’t go as planned. Maybe customers complain, employees don’t pitch in, or you feel like you’re not getting the recognition you deserve.
In both scenarios, the key is to reflect on your feelings and reactions. Why are certain comments or situations so triggering? Deep down, you may just want to be acknowledged, appreciated, and valued for your efforts. But waiting for others to express gratitude can often lead to disappointment.
Instead, consider taking control of the situation by first giving yourself recognition and appreciation. Understand that you have the power to create a Thanksgiving dinner (or a business) that aligns with your desires and values. Maybe you ask for help or explore different ways to make the experience more enjoyable.
Ultimately, it’s about finding the balance between what you want to create and what is expected of you. By stepping back, reflecting, and making intentional choices, you can have a Thanksgiving (and a business) that brings joy, fulfillment, and success.
Transcript of This Episode- Making the Most of the Holidays
Kavita Melwani [00:00:00]:
Hello. My name is Kavita Melwani, and I’m a master certified success and business coach with two decades of experience as an entrepreneur and almost a decade as a coach. I want to personally welcome you to the Soulful Entrepreneurs Club podcast, where my vision is to empower as many spiritually led businesses to run purposeful and profitable businesses aligned with true selves. I want you to confidently and opulently shine your light without the overwhelm, the stress or the burnout. Together, we will explore challenges that soulful entrepreneurs face and real, implementable solutions so you can step into your unique purpose and shine. It is possible to bridge the success you already have with the truest, soulful, mystical parts of yourself. Are you ready to rise up as the leader you were born to be? Then join me, my soulful friends. The time is now for you to rise up and shine your light.
Kavita Melwani [00:01:06]:
The world needs you. Hello, soulful entrepreneurs. Welcome to this week’s episode of the Soulful Entrepreneurs podcast. Okay, so I know for those of you that are in the United States, this is an interesting week. This is a week that we celebrate Thanksgiving. And for some of you, it’s a time of fun and family and a lot of maybe hosting. And for others, it can be a very isolating and lonely time and can bring up some family challenges that you’ve had in the past, maybe losses that you’ve had, and seeing all the messages around you about how this time of year is about being grateful and that it’s for family and all of that can be difficult. So in today’s episode, I want to talk to you about why this is a good time to do some shadow work.
Kavita Melwani [00:02:17]:
And of course, ideally with a coach, but also so that you can move forward and not feel the intensity of this time in the way that you’re feeling it now. And even if you do feel this moving forward, you know what you need to do to be able to process the emotions, to recognize what’s happening and to show up in the way that you want to show up. Okay, so first, no matter which category you are in, if you are in the category of feeling the trigger, feeling alone, feeling different from and in that way not really fitting the traditional, what it needs to or supposed to look like as a family, or you might be overwhelmed with all of the family and all the things and the obligations. So whichever one it is, either way can be triggering. So when you think about the holidays and you think about, especially this week and the hosting and the food, what are the feelings and thoughts that come up for you. And then what are the people? If you’re going to be around people that bother you the most, who are those people? And when you think about the people that bother you, if you’re not going to be surrounded by people, then you can think about what messages and situations around you that you’re being told that you need to have are triggering for you. So going towards that feeling, giving that feeling of voice, how can you give that feeling some way to express itself? One of the healthiest ways is to be able to write about it. And if you’re working with someone that helps you process your emotions, someone impartial, like a coach or a therapist or someone like that, who is considered like a third party, then you can process it with that person.
Kavita Melwani [00:04:34]:
But allowing, even if all you do is to write down the triggers, write down what’s bothering you, and what about them that’s bothering you. That’s a starting point. Okay. Now the shadow work is a little deeper, and that’s not something that I would suggest that you do on your own. But I think being and bringing that awareness of what’s bothering you and why it’s bothering you gives you the opportunity to respond differently than you have been in the past. So let me give you a few examples. So maybe for you, you’re a person that hosts Thanksgiving, and when you host, you want things to be pretty much almost perfect. You want everything to look good, you want the food to be a certain way, and you spend a lot of time on making sure everything goes well.
Kavita Melwani [00:05:24]:
And then when the people show up, you are working most of the time in the kitchen, and you’re working the whole time. And so you don’t get to sit down for a long time to sit and eat. Maybe you spend some time, and then afterwards you’re cleaning up, and at the end of it, you’re exhausted, okay? If you, at the end of that whole scenario, feel excited and happy and feel fulfilled that you were able to feed these people and that it was an amazing experience and you’re glad you have a year off from it, but you can’t wait to do it next year, then that is something that you just continue to do. On the other hand, if you’re feeling, wow, I was not appreciated, I can’t believe so and so didn’t even offer to help me. Or you’re feeling like, why do I have to host every year? Or you made too much food, or you didn’t make enough food, or someone made a comment about your decorations, or someone made a comment about the taste of your food. And that bothered you. So if you look at all those scenarios and you most likely have a normal reaction, right? So maybe your reaction is to be upset. Maybe your reaction is to sit there and stew and stay angry.
Kavita Melwani [00:06:49]:
But instead, what if you allowed yourself to look at it and see, why am I actually upset? And so maybe when a person makes a comment about your cooking or the decorations, it feels like they’re insulting you and your efforts and they don’t appreciate. And for you, being appreciated is important and you put in a lot of effort and you would like a thank you. Okay. And so your expectation is a person to be grateful and to say thank you. Well, the fact is that people don’t always respond and react the way we like. And when we’re wanting so badly to create a situation where people are grateful and we want to show them how hard we work and are hoping that they’re going to come back and say, wow, you did such a good job and we’re hanging on and waiting for that, then most likely you’re going to be disappointed. So when you recognize that you really want gratitude and you want to be people to say thank you, then I would go further and say, well, why is it important to you when someone says thank you? What does it feel like when someone expresses gratitude? And so how can you do that for yourself? How can you thank yourself in a way? Right? I know it sounds weird, but how can you create a situation where you are recognizing yourself? So how can you start to give yourself gratitude? How can you give yourself recognition? What could that look like? Right? And you can even ask people around you for support. You can ask them and the people that love you and say, you know what, it really is helpful when I do these things.
Kavita Melwani [00:08:44]:
And when I host, if you say thank you, I really appreciate when people say thank you. And when no one says thank you, I feel, and you can fill in the blank what you’re feeling, right. And so there’s a sense of, like, how can you show up differently, energetically and physically? How can you ask for what you need? Maybe you decide that, you know what, I actually don’t enjoy cooking all these things. I’m cooking all these things and doing all this because I want that recognition and thank you. And your brain is telling you that the more you do, the more likely you’re going to get that. So what about instead, if you decided that, well, I’m going to just do the things that I really enjoy doing, and maybe I’m going to order the rest of the food, or I’m going to ask people to support and bring something. And so you make it a little bit of a potluck, make it aligned with what you actually want versus what you believe you need to do. Okay.
Kavita Melwani [00:09:52]:
So that’s just one example of how you can change things around to support you. So if you are on your own and you are trying to not feel that loneliness, well, ask yourself what you want to create. What is it that you want to feel during this time? Right? You have the freedom to experience what you would like. And one of the things that is the most rewarding when we start to get lost in our own brain is to somehow give back and serve others. So is there a way that you can volunteer? Is there a person that you would like to see? Maybe it’s not on Thanksgiving Day, but maybe other days of the weekend you can get together with people. Maybe there’s a type of food that you really like, and you get that it doesn’t have to be the traditional meal. So how can you make this time of year serve you? How can you feel as good as possible? Now, I know that when you see all the messages and maybe you’re feeling triggered by not having family. Now, I’m going to encourage you, if you have some trauma or something that is really deep that happened this time of year or family trauma, that you receive support, okay, to speak to a therapist or whoever you need to.
Kavita Melwani [00:11:20]:
But if it’s not at that level, it’s more about just being triggered in this level of, like, this is annoying, and I can’t believe this. And why is it always like this? Why am I the only one? Then? That’s something you can process also through the journaling. Okay. And with that journaling, you can choose, what is it that I want to create? What is it that I want to feel, and what can I do to feel that now? So this is hopefully giving you some way to step back from what is happening, recognize what you’re feeling, recognize what you’re thinking, and also creating a scenario where you’re able to start to do the things so that you can have an experience closer to what you truly desire instead of being on a default reactive mode. So I’d love to hear from you if you tried this. I know this is a little bit of a departure from entrepreneurship, but I think that most of you as entrepreneurs, also have that family dynamics to work with, whatever that may be. And so you can take this this week, and you can even apply this to your business and say, well, what is it that I want my business to be like this week. What do I want to focus on this week? What would the results that I like this week to be? Right.
Kavita Melwani [00:12:40]:
And be clear about how much time you actually have. And how much time you want to spend. I’m going to recommend that you don’t get caught up in what you think you’re supposed to do. This is your life. This is your business. Choose what to focus on. Choose it based on what you want to create. What you want to feel.
Kavita Melwani [00:13:02]:
And the results you want. And then you can continue to create the life and the business that you love. So this is Kavita with soulful Entrepreneurs Club. I look forward to next week. Until then, take good care. Bye.