Holidays are a time of frivolity and fun. Perhaps none are quite like the Fourth of July where the warmth of the summer sun and backyard BBQ combine. By continually celebrating our independence, we keep those history lessons in mind and want to continue the freedom that the founders of the United States sought. Yet for some, holidays often bring additional hardships. Many people are bombarded by unpleasant thoughts whether from an addiction or from self-doubt.
For those who struggle with the Fourth of July, having a game plan can help. Plan out beforehand what issues you might come into contact with during the day. For example, if you are trying to stay away from alcohol, plan on getting a different beverage at the beginning of the party and keep that full. If you struggle with a sexual addiction, perhaps deciding on locations of the party that might be easier for you to enjoy rather than the poolside or some place that is a struggle. If you have a family where certain members are more toxic than others, plan ways to interact (or not interact) with them that are less of an issue. Any of these ideas might mean joining a different group altogether. Above all, have a predetermined ending time so that you can leave the party at a time that is good for you rather than staying and risking your mental health independence.
Certainly, the Fourth of July holiday celebrates the independence that those in the Unites States have but it makes a great time to think about your own personal independence. Maybe you have gone through many battles with addictions and are finally achieving victory. Maybe you want to get to that point with your sexual addiction or pain killer addiction. Perhaps you have recently gained your independence from a relationship, whether a toxic romantic relationship or even a difficult, abusive, coworker. Maybe you are celebrating financial independence or the launch of a kid to college. I know many of our clients might celebrate relief from depression or other debilitating mental conditions. There are many types of independence to celebrate and doing so can help you maintain that independence for the years to come.