Turning Disappointment Into Delight

Disappointment seems to be on the menu this year as we alter our holiday plans to address the rise in Covid cases in our area. Since Michael and I experienced first-hand the impact of the virus on family members who were hospitalized, we’re curbing our exposure to crowds to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe. 

While it’s frustrating to still be limited in how we’re able to move about the world, I’m grateful for the chance to strengthen my ability to come back to this moment and simply deal with the events unfolding before me. Acceptance and presence are the keys to peace of mind. 

This holiday season, I’m more focused on the simple things that make life rich and meaningful regardless of what we can and cannot do. And last week’s emails were certainly an inspiration in this regard. I received many beautiful examples from all over the world of what you love about this time of year – a reminder that it doesn’t take much to make the season bright.

Here’s some of what readers say they love… 

The Hallmark channel and all the other Christmas shows.

The smell of wood-burning stoves at night.

Pets with holiday collars.

Taking out heirloom ornaments.

Singing and dancing to Christmas carols while cooking in the kitchen.

Creating funny gift tags for my family's Christmas gifts so they have to figure out who they belong to.

Walking on crackling frozen grass.

All the little trails and prints in the snow from birds, squirrels, rabbits.

Finding a fun and/or meaningful gift for someone.

Stargazing on a clear winter night. 

The way the birds come to the window as if to say, "Hey, you need to refill the sunflower seeds in the bird feeder.”

From a reader who lives down under:

I love warm winds, the smell of Gardenias, and swims in the ocean. (Sounds like holiday heaven!)

And one brave soul who loves…

The satisfaction of managing my 15-mile commute to work on my bicycle although it is cold, dark, often wet, and really hard. (Impressive!)

And this sweet message that made me smile:

I love the sound of the grand littles coming in from walking through the field with their cheeks all rosy wanting cookies and hot chocolate.

Finally, Sharon wrote to say that she loved…

Delighting family members with unexpected surprises. This year I gifted my Godson/nephew one of my grandfather's beloved paintings.

I love this idea. Sharon, you’ve inspired me to gift some of my own beloved items to loved ones this year, too. 

So, here we are. Another chance to strengthen our ability to deal with the only thing we have control over in life: What lies before us. 

I say, let’s use disappointment as a catalyst for delight. Let’s appreciate the little things, which, in the end, really are the big things after all.

Love,
Cheryl

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Author Information

Cheryl Richardson

Cheryl Richardson is the New York Times bestselling author of several books including, Take Time for Your LifeLife MakeoversStand Up for Your LifeThe Unmistakable Touch of GraceThe Art of Extreme Self Care, You Can Create an Exceptional Life with Louise Hay, and her new book, Waking Up in Winter: In Search of What Really Matters at Midlife.

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