After the family has cleared out of your home, the Christmas Tree or Hannukah Menorah has been taken down, the decadent meals have long since digested, there comes a moment after the whirlwind of the Holidays when you may come back to yourself and think “what now?” Or, “where did I go?” Or just, “wow, I’m exhausted.” And the cultural expectation that you’ll spring forward into enthusiastic new goals for the new year right away doesn’t help! You may feel like staring blankly at the wall is more realistic at the moment.
Many of us, especially introverts and high-sensitivity types, experience a loss of self around the Holidays. When we go to re-start in the New Year, we may find much of our substance and momentum has been lost or derailed. The demands of the Holidays can overshadow our sense of purpose, path, and self – and yet this is not entirely a bad thing! We’ve gotten swept up in the currents of family, celebration, reunions, and have let go a little of our own self and trajectory. The trick, then, is not to say that the Holidays are bad or just a waste of energy, no! I hope in fact that you did let go enough to get some real down time and did connect truly with someone in your family. The Holidays have a wonderful purpose of rest, relaxation (hopefully), and reconnection with loved ones. The trick then, is re-purposing, and re-focusing on our unique, sacred path once the Holidays have come and gone.
So, if you find yourself in a post-Holiday tailspin of moods, or just feeling a little thrown or lost, here are some helpful tips to reclaim your sense of self and move forward in the New Year.
- Find a vibration that represents what you experienced.
Our energy field likes the feeling of completion, of a job well done, of a goal set and made. When we experience a positive ending, the energy that was expended during the cycle of creativity (in this case, the holiday trip or the party we planned) comes back to us as a digestible feeling of peace and happiness. A positive ending means that the experience was complete, and ends without any loose strings left hanging that could pull on our psyche and wear us out. In a positive ending, the energy we need to start the next cycle is available to us instead of caught in a memory or an incomplete interaction.
To understand this concept more viscerally, take a few moments to reflect on your holiday experience. What were the highlights? Did a meal you planned come out great, did you have a meaningful conversation with your boyfriend’s mother or with your sister that left you feeling like, “yeah, we really connected!” Whatever the moments were, big or small, imagine the whole of your Holiday experience coming together as a smell, a color, or feeling. It could be a humming sound or a lifted feeling or the smell of gingerbread cooking. For me it is a feeling of lift and expanse in my heart, like I banked a bigger heart chakra through all that happened this holiday season, good and bad. Whatever you choose, this is the vibration of “the Holidays” for you. It is different than anyone else’s experience, and make sure you make it big enough and whole enough to encompass everything you felt, thought, and experienced.
If your holiday experience was unpleasant…if there was a lot of tension in your family, or if you felt really thrown off in the process (which believe me, puts you in the introvert’s majority), at least find one thing that did mean something to you, and let that be the vibration that you remember most. This is part of a process of self-forgiveness for anything that was difficult, while choosing a positive focus that allows you to let go and move on. Perhaps you saw a Christmas ornament from your childhood when you returned home, and it brought back a happy memory. Whatever it is, find one note of resonance to fill your field with that wraps your field in a feeling of warmth. That succinct feeling of one symbol will relax your system and allow you to feel complete with what was, even if there were some hiccups.
- If you dropped yourself, find the reason why.
So many people come in to my practice after the Holidays and look a little glazed over, like they just got hit by a (metaphorical) bus. I tend to look that way too! Why? Because, we all did just get hit by a bus! The Holidays really pack a punch – we are “on” 24/7, we are out of our normal flows, we are guests in others’ houses or we have guests in our homes, there are a million activities and parties planned, everything is packed in to a week and a half-ish. It can feel like a lot is expected to happen in a short amount of time. So, being exhausted is pretty normal.
Yet, the question that I still feel compelled to ask when I see that glazey look is, “When did you go blank?” To look at why this happens, we have to examine our underlying ideals and expectations of ourselves when we are seeped in social dynamics of every shape and color. Did you forget to track yourself when others were around, putting your own needs on hold to be picked up after the New Year? Did you give more than you actually have to give? Did you give less than you actually have to give, withholding generosity because of an old grudge or shyness? Did you forget who you are in the process of attempting to please everyone else? Any and all of these patterns can throw us off balance.
Holidays can trigger so many patterns in the realm of giving and receiving, of self-worth and self-esteem. Taking the time to look back and track what happened, can give you great clues for finding yourself again.
One of the most important concepts in energy healing is that once you name a dynamic or pattern in yourself, you are then able to heal or change it. If it goes unnamed, and you stay in the blankness without figuring out why and how you got there, you won’t feel much better and you are likely to repeat the same pattern next time.
You can write the patterns down or better yet, share them with someone who can help you process. Once you get them off your chest, you’ll feel much more able to move to step three…
- Reclaim and reset
In steps one, you completed the holidays and tied up any loose strings energetically, and in step two you looked at any patterns that contributed to feeling lost or down once the buzz of the Holidays wore off.
The next important piece is finding yourself again, and starting to looking forward to something again. You can’t do that if you’re stuck in a memory, or unresolved in some way. But once you are complete and ready, the next step of the process is to re-member yourself, meaning to put the pieces of yourself, which may be a little scattered, back together in a cohesive way.
So, who are you?
That’s a big question to ask any time of year! But at the beginning of a new cycle, it is especially important. Take time with it, sit with it. Feel the vibration of YOU start to re-emerge.
What is important to you?
The holidays tend to bring up lots of old ways of being and relating. Many of these may not be realistic or useful to you anymore. Can you let them go and remember what direction you really wanted to go in?
My last bit of advice is this: Make sure you feel your real self again before you talk New Year’s resolutions. Resolutions or goals made from your post-Holiday sense of self may not match who you really are in your life now. They might come from recently unearthed insecurity or an older sense of self. Perhaps you need more exercise, for example, but is that whole picture of who you are trying to become, or a knee-jerk reaction to feeling insecure after eating too much during the holidays? That is just one example of a compensatory goal, not a true, soul-connected goal.
So my suggestion after the holidays is to really take the time that YOU need to come back to yourself. Get back on your own timeline, instead of syncing up with everyone else. Get help in clarifying your values if you’ve dropped them a little. Do the practices that you know to be helpful for you. Don’t make bold statements and drastic changes unless they feel really centered.
Loss of self can be a truly unbalancing, scary feeling. It can happen after any type of derailing event: a car accident, a breakup, a stressful day, a trip, holidays, or a change of environment. High-sense perception individuals or introverts suffer more keenly from the effects, more often, since the sense of self is less prominent in the first place than that of an extrovert. These steps can help you identify what went off in the first place for you, so that the journey back to center is clear. The main point here is that once your energy has come back to you, you’ll be much more able to move ahead with optimism and clarity.
If you’re still having trouble moving through the depression or blank feeling, don’t hesitate to reach out! I offer free 25 minute phone consultations for this purpose.