I’m not going to lie, 2012 has been a rough year. I know many people share that sentiment, as I know most of my friends do. For me, the year started with the loss of my favorite entertainer, Whitney Houston, then one of my favorite aunts (I only have two), and it ended with the loss of my dear friend, celebrity make-up artist Ross Burton. And, of course, the entire nation and world is mourning the recent tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut. On so many levels, I think we are all in need of a collective healing.
Not one for ever wallowing in sadness, I am super excited about the holidays because what better time to celebrate life, make wrongs right and be hopeful for a brighter future? Yes, leading up to next week has been trying, but the more we get closer to it, the more I am able to focus on the rejuvenation that the holiday season can bring. I’m taking the opportunity to do some things to recharge my spirit and truly embrace the beauty of the season.
Here are some ways to heal a troubled spirit that work for me, and that I am currently practicing.
1. Meditation. I have been trying to meditate for years, but thanks to Deepak Chopra and Oprah giving away a 21-Day Meditation Challenge for free I have been meditating more frequently and it really works. I encourage you to try it if you’ve never done it before. Don’t give up if it doesn’t work so well the first time. I’m told it takes 21 days to create a habit.
2. Journaling. Here’s another one that I just hadn’t been able to get into in the past, but I’ve been journaling and it has completely been a cheap form of therapy. With journaling you can say what’s really on your mind. We all possess the ability to heal ourselves within our spirits and some times you just have to write it out to see it.
3. Help somebody. I often find when I call a friend and ask, “How can I help you today,” I always feel better. It truly puts things in perspective when you help someone and put your spirit in a posture of service. With so much loss this year, including those affected by Sandy, there is always someone who stands in need. You probably don’t have to look too far outside of your family and friends.
4. Forgive someone and apologize. I have often said in this column that forgiveness is for you. It is crucial to healing a wounded spirit and broken heart. Even if you don’t contact the person, still forgive them in your heart. And then, apologize if you can. “Apologizing doesn’t mean you’re wrong; it just means you value your relationships more than your ego.” – Will Smith
5. Celebrate. I come from a family that knows how to party. Don’t forget to celebrate all that you have and the people in your life. Nothing says the holidays and joy to me more than being able to celebrate and party with the people that mean the most to me.
I can’t think of a better gift you can give yourself than putting your spirit in a position to heal. It will do wonders for you and those around you. Happy Holidays!
Wishing you love and ceaseless joy! Follow @NathanHWilliams on Twitter.
Nathan’s book INSPIRATION: Profiles of Black Women Changing Our World is available now.