3 Simple Rituals to Boost Meaning This December

Dec 13, 2023 | Design Your Life | 0 comments

Rituals help us connect and make meaning or deepen meaning in our lives. We can have rituals around the holidays or the end of the year or in our daily life. Here are a few you might consider in this season. 

Share Stories and Traditions

Traditions are long-standing customs. Sharing the stories of holiday or other traditions brings more meaning to what can become rote actions. Why do you eat this food? Where did these decorations come from? Why do we do this? Telling the story is a way to connect people and to breathe life into the tradition. Elders might share what the tradition was like or why it had particular meaning when they were younger. People might share a favorite memory of the tradition. For more ideas on sharing family stories, see What a Gift to Swap Family Stories This Holiday Season!

Swap Favorite Memories

Take some time to swap favorite memories of the year. You could do this around the dinner table or as an activity after a meal. If you’re traveling for the holidays, pass the time waiting at the airport or while in the car by sharing favorite stories of things that happened in the year. 

Some ideas to get you started:

  • Favorite memory of a holiday 
  • Celebrations (a graduation, wedding, special birthday …)
  • Special accomplishments, awards, or honors
  • A special trip
  • Something that made you all laugh
  • Learning or creating something special

Another great way to get started is to flip through pictures on your phone. These will remind you of things you might have forgotten about. 

When you list your favorite memories, take time to tell the story or share a detail that sticks out — remember how it rained at graduation and everyone was barefoot under their gowns, remember how dad dropped my birthday cake and we went out for ice cream, remember when we got lost on the trail and found a cool cave? 

This is a great way to connect and to add more meaning to the year by taking time to honor where you’ve been. 

Write a Letter About the Year

Consider writing a letter about the year. You could write a letter to your family or dear friends sharing your memories and thoughts on the year. Or you could write a letter to your future self. Then next year at this time, open the letter (or all past letters) and read it. 

You could also write letters to connect to the different members of your family. I often give letters as gifts to my husband, Chip, and my children, and have received letters from them as a gift. Honestly the letters that have been given to me are my most treasured gifts. Get the step-by-step process of writing letters to connect. This makes a truly meaningful gift, and the ritual of writing will give you time to reflect on people who mean a lot to you. 

How will you add meaning to your life in this season and the new year?

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Hi, I’m Melanie!

I’m a Journaling and Joy Coach and I believe your story is the key to the life you want.

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