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Who do you want to BE this holiday season?

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, right?

As someone who loves the snow, and all things Christmas-y, the holiday season is one of the most energizing times I have all year. But it’s also, historically, been one of the most expectation-filled times as well.

I would go into December with a list of things I wanted to do. Movie nights with my family to watch some of our favourites, visits with friends, tree trimming and decorating …

It all had its place on the calendar and, at times, would detract from my ability to immerse in the things I had so wanted to do. Mind busy with what was next on the list, was I capturing it all, doing the things I wanted and needed to do in quick enough succession to get through them all?

Enough of that. No more to-do lists. This year has taught me so many lessons that I am choosing to bring into this holiday season. For one, I knew I had to take radical responsibility for my holiday experience.

As a reminder, radical responsibility is the act of taking direct, firm, and consistent accountability for our thinking, actions, and responses. It requires that we blow up victim mode, which I think many of us find ourselves in during the holidays.

“I can’t enjoy a cup of hot chocolate and a good book right now because I have too much wrapping to do.”

This is a mindset thing. We aren’t trapped by anything except self-imposed expectations.

So, I sat down and asked myself who I wanted to be this year.

I knew I wanted to be present, really present.

I wanted to be free to fully immerse in the funniest scenes of “Christmas Vacation” and many other holiday favourites – phone off, distractions tuned out.

I wanted to be in nature, going for trail walks with my dogs and playing in the snow every time it falls.

The “to be” version of myself felt freeing. There were no expectations or deadlines on my to-be list - instead, it served as a guide for me. It keeps me mindful when a friend suggests a holiday drink, when my husband asks to take a spontaneous drive to see lights, or when my daughter is home from college.

I get to be a version of myself who is serving a higher purpose this holiday season—committed to experiencing the time I have with the people I love in a way that doesn’t feel pressured.

Here’s the part where you say to me, “well, sure, that SOUNDS great, Cheryl, but how can I do that when I have so many things that depend on me to get done? How can I let go of the pressure to make magic of it all.”

Do you know what I’m going to say? It’s all up to you!

You decide.

I dedicated 2022 to the word “embodiment,” which is the integration of something in alignment with my thinking/mindset, my nervous system, and my actions—mind, body, and soul. And I choose to embody the higher holiday version of myself without guilt or self-doubt.

Your mindset and how you approach deciding who you want to be this holiday season must align with your actions.

For example, if you’ve decided to tell yourself you will be free from distraction during holiday baking with your family, then it becomes your responsibility to uphold that. It’s too easy to pass the blame onto other factors but taking radical responsibility for your experience will help you achieve this version of yourself.

You also need to be prepared to let things happen as they will; the more expectations you place on the holiday season, the harder it is to remove yourself from the to-do’s and embody your to-be.

There are three critical questions I challenge you to ask yourself when deciding who you want to be this holiday season:

1. What do I need to do to show up as this version of myself?

2. What needs to change within myself and around me to be this version of myself?

3. What expectations can I let go of or change to embody this version of myself?

Once you have answered these questions, you can frame your mindset in alignment with who you want to be this holiday season. But if you’re still struggling to embody this version of yourself, I’m here to help you take radical responsibility for this transformation.

Believing in you,


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