I always find the short few weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day to be joyous, hopeful and celebratory. However, I also find this same time frame to be frustrating, stressful and a bit melancholy. I am not sure if it is the short days, the increasingly gray skies and the mad rush of just about everything, or the simple realization that another year has quickly passed and I am not sure what lies ahead. I know, however, that I am not alone and that many others feel the same way.

For many of my divorce clients, this time of year is one of the most difficult. Some are hoping to wrap up their cases by the end of the year so that they can "start fresh" on January 1. Others are just trying to muddle their way through the holiday season any which way they can. Those who are at the beginning of the difficult divorce process know that the upcoming year is going to be filled with many ups and downs and are just trying to "keep the peace" for the next several weeks (hopefully).

I was discussing this issue over coffee with a friend several days ago. We both agreed that there are certain things that help us to stay positive and enjoy the spirit of the season. The most notable were these:

(1) Take time for yourself. Even if it is just a short walk outside to breathe in the cool, crisp winter air or a cup of coffee with a good friend, making time for you is critical during this busy season.

(2) Be kind to others. It's amazing how a shared smile or letting someone pass you in a line will make both you and a complete stranger feel better.

(3) See things through the eyes of a child. All children, regardless of which holiday they may celebrate, seem to have a special sparkle in their eyes during the holiday season. They are excited for the time with family, the magic of the season and the excitement of the new year ahead. Staying positive, even when you're dealing with difficult issues, is one of the best gifts you can give to your children during the holidays.

As the next few weeks march on, I encourage you to find the joy in the season any which way you can.

All of us at Williams Family Law wish our clients, colleagues, family and friends a peaceful holiday season and wonderful New Year.