I spent all year waiting for the holiday season, and when it finally comes, I feel like they never live up to my expectations, so why can't I enjoy the holidays?
If you are like me, you've probably already planned what you'll be doing on Christmas and New year's eve. You've decorated accessibly, prepared your Christmas tree, got the gifts for everyone, and planned your perfect Christmas meal, but when the day comes, you just don't seem to enjoy holidays, but what's the reason behind that?
Why can't I enjoy the holidays?
The holiday season makes us feel something that could be harmful: anticipation. We spend so much time anticipating what our holidays will be that when they finally arrive, it feels like the day is over in a second, and all the joy that we've been feeling for weeks evaporates as soon as we open our presents.
Anticipation gives us something to look forward and it is a tool to look at the future with positivity. When we have problems with our past or present, anticipating our future can soothe our anxiety and help us get through rough times.
Planning what to do during the holiday season gives life meaning, and it is perfectly fine. Especially after the pandemic, when we all were wary about our future and had few events to look forward to. The holidays trigger nostalgic memories of the world without the pandemic, and when they are over we feel let down.
What to do to feel better during holidays
Don't stop planning, it is perfectly healthy to look forward to an event, it stimulates happy hormones, and it gives us meaning. This is what you can do to hack your letdown feelings:
- Set specific plans, don't just talk about it.
- Schedule calls, meetings with your loved ones.
- Plan activities for the day after the holidays and make it something that you love doing.
- Be flexible, plans can change, and you can't control every detail in your life.