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Think for a moment about the people or circumstances that absolutely light up your life. I hope there are too many for you to name. During this season of thanksgiving and peace cultivating - I want to be around these kinds of people more and more. Name them. Find them. Thank them!

People who are "light bearers" can often be made to feel shallow or silly. What a shame. If there is anything we need more of today in our crazy world - it is LIGHT.

I have some friends who just live for Hallmark movie season this time of year. I have actually never watched one - can you believe that? But - I appreciate the vibe. Something light hearted, light in spirit, a little light in the darkness - is that so bad? No. We need more of it. I found this post on Threads this week and it really spoke to me:

Hallmark Christmas movies just make a person feel great about life. Sure, they can be cheesy, but what’s wrong with that? Why do we have a tendency to make fun of uplifting things? They should be celebrated. Uplifting things are exactly what the world needs. So if a person wants to enjoy a cup of hot cocoa (with a heaping pile of marshmallows) whilst indulging in a Hallmark Christmas film and maybe getting a tad emotional during the totally predictable (yet still heartwarming) ending, let them. @winters__muse

Where are you so focused, sarcastic, or critical that you cannot allow others to just enjoy? Where do you need to let go of expectations? Where can you find and center on light in your own life? Often when we are tearing down others, it is because we are being too critical of ourselves.

My friend Christian sent me a podcast from Black Girl Burnout a few weeks ago and I *loved this quote.* I keep returning to it. I still find myself being overly critical of myself at times, but I have gotten so much better. I am the first person to say that I have released the

desire to be harsh. I have released the desire to be fierce. I have released the desire to be flawless. I no longer want to be a warrior. I no longer want to be perfect. I just want to be gentle, and I want to be frankly messy. I'm going to make some mistakes. I want to be brave enough to try new things and mess them up and still know that life will continue on, that I'll be fine as long as I am doing those mistakes with a measure of care for myself and making sure, of course, never harming another person. I want to be freer with myself and for me, softness means safety, and it means a freedom to just live the life that I know I deserve and that you of course, in turn deserve.

I'm inviting you into this holiday season to be focused on being a light bearer - we need more of it. I'm inviting you to a space to let some things go - we need less of it. I'll be working on this right beside you, because I want to have the grace to be messy, to try courage, to give up perfectionism. Want to be friends focused on light this season and on into 2024? Let me know (scroll down to "Let's Connect" or just email me). I have ideas.

One last thought. I have also found myself so inspired on the topic of positive energy from Taylor Swift. She has said, "The worst kind of person is someone who makes you feel bad, dumb, or stupid for being excited about something." And, in her NYU Class of 2022 Commencement Address, she said, "And while we’re talking about things that make us squirm but really shouldn’t, I’d like to say that I’m a big advocate for not hiding your enthusiasm for things. It seems to me that there is a false stigma around eagerness in our culture of ‘unbothered ambivalence.’ This outlook perpetuates the idea that it’s not cool to ‘want it.’ That people who don’t try hard are fundamentally more chic than people who do. And I wouldn’t know because I have been a lot of things but I’ve never been an expert on ‘chic.’ But I’m the one who’s up here so you have to listen to me when I say this: Never be ashamed of trying. Effortlessness is a myth. The people who wanted it the least were the ones I wanted to date and be friends with in high school. The people who want it most are the people I now hire to work for my company."

May this season for you be absolutely full of light - joy - excitement - enthusiasm - courage - grace - and encouragement.

If everything around you seems dark, look again. You may be the light. -Rumi

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