Saturday, December 24, 2005

Holding Your Own with Family

The holidays are filled with family and friends. During these gatherings it's important to remember your personal boundaries to contain your energy. It's too easy to feel emotionally drained by family and large crowds of people. As a reminder, I am reprinting one of my articles with simple steps to help you have a wonderful holiday experience, rather than a drained one.

Creative Approaches to Family Gatherings
by Jodie Foster

Do you find yourself dreading family gatherings?

Is the family situation trying and very draining on your emotional state?

Staying centered when others around us are spinning in excitement, anticipation or agitation is never easy. It is challenging to hold our own position at times. The energy encountered in your family can be overwhelming. When you have to be at a family gathering, remember to take a few simple steps before getting out of your car:

1. Take three deep breaths.

2. Pull in your energetic field closer to your body (this contains your energy so it is not so porous and expanded- keeping you from picking up other’s energies). You can also do this by crossing your arms over your heart, hugging yourself tightly and feeling very contained.

3. Focus your energy on your feet- feeling how rooted you are to the earth.

4. Clear your mind and focus on the task at hand, knowing you are centered within yourself and nothing can truly harm you or hurt you.

These few simple methods will help you have a better experience. They seem like very simple concepts, but each has a specific purpose and work together to bring you into a state of conscious awareness. This awareness is the most powerful tool we possess. If you have conscious awareness you are remaining empowered in your personal space. This can assist you in holding your own energy rather than being drained by the swirling energy around you.

It’s easy to get caught up in family tension, experiencing undue demands on yourself and the guilt that comes with living according to old feelings of expectation and duty. Simply because something has been unchanged for years, does it mean it is the only way it can be done? Think about the ramifications of some of these expectations that have been passed down through the family for generations.

Do the family expectations make you uncomfortable? Do you visit members of the family out of duty rather than out of excitement and joy? Are you weighed down by the expectations placed upon you? Is there a sense of loyalty that is defining your every move? What would happen if you created a new way of responding? Would it be more fulfilling to you personally? Would you feel guilt? Would it bring you joy? Would it be exciting? Would it be too uncomfortable?
Only you would know inside yourself what your response would be.

Is it worth finding out? Step out on your own and do things differently the next time you are at a family gathering. Why not take the risk to change? Change is the healthiest thing we can ever do for ourselves. Being caught in a routine is stifling and can cause our energies to stagnate.

Samsara is a Sanskrit word that means to me, “the only thing that never changes, is the fact that everything changes.” Samsara is about flow. Energy in flowing motion is free and openly being expressed. Energy held in expectation and tradition can be stagnant and unmoving.
Which do you prefer? Which do you choose? Take the leap and make a change! And most of all, remember it’s about your wellbeing. Do what brings you joy. Allow that to be the guiding force within you.

© 2005 Jodie Foster

Jodie Foster is an Intuitive Counselor who assists clients to create extraordinary transformations in their daily lives. Her work is uplifting, empowering and success-oriented. You can visit Jodie’s website at for further information and to schedule a private intuitive session. You can also look for weekly updates to her blog at:

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