Pay No Attention to the Three Cs

This season, as you gather with friends and family and friends who have become family, there are bound to be some relational hiccups (euphemism is one of my spiritual gifts).

Here are three things (that all conveniently start with the letter C) that you should give up engaging in or listening to so that you can thrive instead of merely survive during the holidays.


You are a beloved child of God and the very best at being you. You do not need to compare yourself to others or listen to anyone else who asks “Why can’t you be more like ________?” You do you. Nobody does it better.

For who do you know that really knows you, knows your heart? And even if they did, is there anything they would discover in you that you could take credit for? Isn’t everything you have and everything you are sheer gifts from God? So what’s the point of all this comparing and competing? You already have all you need. You already have more access to God than you can handle. I Corinthians 4:7-8 (The Message)

Comparison is the thief of joy

Teddy Roosevelt


You are grown and capable of making good decisions. You do not have to listen to anyone else’s critiques about what you should do, who you should date, when you should marry and how soon you should procreate. Remember: it’s none of your business what other people think of you.

For best results put aside receiving or offering up the C of criticism.

Don’t let any foul words come out of your mouth. Only say what is helpful when it is needed for building up the community so that it benefits those who hear what you say. Ephesians 4:29

Don’t waste your energy trying to change opinions…Do your thing, and don’t care if they like it.

Tina Fey


Remember, that everyone you encounter is dealing with holiday stress…and may not have read this blog post. It’s almost never about you. You are not responsible for other people’s happiness. I repeat, you are not responsible for other people’s happiness. You can extend those cranky folks some grace. Extend yourself some grace. Holidays can be hard. Be gentle with yourself and others. We will all have moments when we are not our best selves.

Let go of anger and leave rage behind!
    Don’t get upset—it will only lead to evil.
Psalm 37:8

Because in this harsh world, gentleness is important. Kindness is integral to gentleness. And being kind to myself and others is the least I can do.

Shanna Loga

So pay no attention to comparisons and criticisms and extend those cranky people (including yourself) some grace in this stressful season.

Rev. Anne Russ is an ordained pastor in the Presbyterian Church (USA), currently based in New York City. Doubting Believer provides tools and encouragement for the rollercoaster ride of your faith journey. Follow me on Facebook , Instagram and YouTube. You can also follow on TikTok. Get emails to keep up with all that is happening.

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