The Joy of Pausing

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Between season openers, championship games, homework, last minute food shopping, before we set out for travel or before our dining rooms are filled with family and friends . . . let’s take a pause.

We slow down this time of year to celebrate our successes, focus on where we can get better and most importantly, center ourselves in gratitude for all of the laughs, joy, growth, spirit and brotherhood that filled our Winaukee community over the course of the summer.

Pausing amidst the chaos of the daily to-do list is paramount to our overall health and well-being. What better time than when the days are shorter and the cooler weather encourages us indoors. Here are some ideas for how to rest and cultivate gratitude within your family this holiday season.

  • When your family is all together, eating a meal or in the car, take a moment to share something you are each grateful for. Cultivating a spirit of gratitude within yourself or your family this holiday season will help you see all of the wonderful things happening around you. Studies have shown that people who actively work at noticing what they are grateful for, are happier and more present on average in their day to day lives.

  • Send a text to a camp friend, counselor or family member just to say hi and check in. Even better, tell them how much you appreciate them and what about them you are grateful for! Connecting with our personal communities keeps us tethered to what is most important when things get hectic.

  • Cancel plans and have a family movie or game night. Make s’mores (with adult supervision) over your fireplace, stove or even using your microwave. Drink hot chocolate, make some popcorn, turn off your electronic devices and cozy up with your loved ones.

  • Around the holidays there is immense focus placed on THINGS, but there are also a lot of people in need. Find a local organization that needs additional support, volunteers or fundraising and dedicate some time as a family towards serving others. Helping others gives us a sense of purpose and connects us with new communities.

However you choose to pause and celebrate gratitude over the coming weeks, taking the time to lift others up and counting your blessings will add greater meaning to this holiday season.

Hold The Fort!

Ashleigh Jackowitz

Camp Winaukee is proud to be considered one of the best summer camps in America and a top employer for summer jobs and internships.