Emotional Fitness

Harness the power of emotion to deepen your love with your partner, become more successful at work, and more

5 True Gifts of the Heart for the Holidays

The holidays are about what you give from your heart.

The holidays are not about what you get or even what you do. They are about what you give from your heart. With that in mind, here some ways to make this special time a wonderful experience for all concerned.

 The holidays are not about what you get or even what you do. They are about what you give. With that in mind, here some ways to make this special time a wonderful experience for all concerned.

 • Give to yourself. Take time every day you are off to put your feet up and relax. If you have a Type A personality, doing so may feel like a waste of time. The truth is that not only will you get just as much done, you may actually accomplish more because you’re approaching the tasks at hand with a clear head and more energy.

 • Give to someone you don’t know. Let someone into your lane of traffic or give up your parking place to someone who is cruising the lot like a lion stalking its prey. If you see a mother buying gifts with a baby in her arms and a child by her side, let her go ahead of you in the checkout line. These acts of kindness will make you feel that you’re living in the spirit of the holidays, and the people you give to may well do the same for others. Remember the movie, “Pay It Forward”?

Find a Therapist

Search for a mental health professional near you.

 • Give a little love. Pick up the phone and call a distant relative who won’t be able to visit this year. Go to your child’s school and participate in some way. Bring some cookies to that neighbor who never seems to have anyone come to his or her door unless they are selling magazine subscriptions. Drop off some old videos to a local homeless shelter or senior citizens home. You might even consider hanging out for an hour or so and talking to some lonely people. You may be the only person who brings them some personal holiday cheer.

 • Give your whole heart. Write a heartfelt letter to your mate and share your deepest feelings. Bouncing your kid on your knee may be problematic if he or she is playing varsity ball, but the sentiment can be the same if you go out for a little one-on-one time and a burger. Find a way to thank your parents for giving you life and the tools you have to get through it. Actions like these are treasured as the best gifts and last longer than diamonds.

 • Give something back. If you feel blessed by life, give some money to those less fortunate. If you don’t feel blessed, doing the same thing may turn things around for you. It might seem counterintuitive, but I’ve witnessed this kind of giving work wonders for those willing to take the opportunity to make a difference. It’s a way of creating greater balance in your own life while adding to the lives of those in need. It will come back to you in ways you will never expect.

Giving is a way of filling your own heart. At this time of year, we all think about it, but if you truly act, the gifts will all be yours.

Dr. Goldsmith's Website

Dr. Goldsmith's Facebook

Dr. Goldsmith's Tweets

Dr. Goldsmith's LinkedIn 

 

 

Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D., is a psychotherapist, columnist, and radio host. His latest book is The Happy Couple: How to Make Happiness a Habit One Little Loving Thing at a Time.

more...

Subscribe to Emotional Fitness

Current Issue

Love & Lust

Who says marriage is where desire goes to die?