Holidays as an Opportunity to Clarify Values

Parent and child on the beach

Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC for Eating Disorder Hope

Holidays are often a conglomeration of many different people, cultures, traditions, and backgrounds. The diversity in families is a unique aspect of the relationships we can form and our potential to love and care for others.

Even with family members or friends who have differing outlooks on life than we might, we still have the opportunity cultivate lasting relationships and friendships.

Rekindling Relationships

Holiday gatherings can be a tremendous opportunity to rekindle with loved ones whom we may not see regularly or reconcile with estranged family members or friends. While opinions and viewpoints might be expressed among others, it is a good time to examine our personal values, or the principles on which we base all that we do in life.

In the face of many different personalities that might be encountered during holiday gatherings and events, you may be overwhelmed, even confused about the things that you value most. Having a time of self-reflection and examination can help you understand where you stand and what things in life are most important to you.

Answering Questions to Yourself

Consider reflecting on these following questions to help you tune into yourself during a time that can seem otherwise chaotic. Think through each question and note your response in a journal for continual consideration.

  • What relationships in your life do you value the most? On what basis do you value relationships? If you are in recovery from an eating disorder, what relationships have encouraged your journey? What relationships may be toxic to your life?
  • Are the choices you are making in life supporting your values? Are you making decisions based on your beliefs and ideas or based on what you think will please other people?
  • What do your interactions with family members or friends reflect about your values or the things that are important to you as a person?

In the busy holiday season, the voice that can get lost the easiest is our own. Even amidst all the hustle and bustle of this time of year, take a moment to be self-reflective and truly understand the principles and values that you stand on. Knowing the foundation that supports you will only help you build yourself up stronger and make decisions confidently and assuredly.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

What situations have helped you better define your values?

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on December 18th, 2014
Published on EatingDisorderHope.com

About Baxter Ekern

Baxter is the Vice President of Ekern Enterprises, Inc. He is responsible for the operations of Eating Disorder Hope and ensuring that the website is functioning smoothly.