During the holiday season, many different aspects of our lives merge – we may actively focus on being an aunt or a son when those roles are otherwise dormant or we may be become the young kid again instead of the in-charge CEO. We may reunite with old friends or neighbors who know more about our youth than our present or we may shine as the family organizer even though we are more laid-back in our later years. It can be hard to reconcile how people see us with how we see ourselves.

Remember that you only know a portion of the story of all those you meet. Uncle Joe may make you crazy, but you haven’t seen the joy he spreads to his war buddies. Your sister may be quiet at the holiday table but share her voice when advocating for a cause. You may be the only one on the Zoom call who knows the silly side of your cousin or the persistence of your nephew.

Everyone knows a different aspect of you. Whether in-person or remotely, let those with whom you share your holidays see a bit of your joy.

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