Christmas is almost here and you get to decide who you want to be.

I don’t mean if you want to be Santa Claus. I mean what kind of person do you want to be? Do you want to be a person who chooses your actions according to your fears of rejection, of getting hurt, of ridicule, or of being taken advantage of? Or do you want to be a person who chooses your actions from your deep desire to be a kind, loving, caring person?

We all have free will to choose who we want to be each and every moment. Your choice of who you want to be comes from your choice of intent: to be controlling to protect yourself from your fears, or to be loving, and open to learning about loving. Your intent determines whether you are a warm, open, kind and caring person, or whether you are a closed, defensive, hard, or angry person.

Your intent also determines how you end up feeling. While you might want to believe that it is others’ rejection and uncaring behavior that cause your anxiety, depression, hurt feelings or anger, it is actually your own choice of who you want to be that causes these feelings. While others’ choices to be unloving can cause sadness, loneliness, heartache and heartbreak, if your choice is to protect against feeling these feelings and taking responsibility for nurturing them, then you will likely close off in reaction to others unloving behavior. It is 100% your choice to close off or to stay open and take responsibility for your own feelings.

Actually, you get to decide who you want to be each moment, not only during Christmas. But why not use Christmas as an opportunity to look deep inside and see who you have chosen to be most of the year? And, are you going to decide to take the risk of loving yourself and others just during the holidays, or all year?

Perhaps there is a part of you inside who says, “If I’m open and caring, I will be too vulnerable to being hurt and used.”

The ego wounded part of us often believes that it is stupid to be open-hearted – that it leaves us too vulnerable to being hurt and walked over.

Yet the opposite is true. Here’s why:

In order to be truly open, loving, and caring with others, you have to first be open, loving and caring with yourself. If you are giving to others without first taking loving care of yourself, then you will likely have an agenda attached to what you give. When you have not taken responsibility for filling yourself up with love, then you are likely giving to others to get love from them. This makes you very vulnerable to rejection and to being used.

However, when you are truly devoted to being loving to yourself, you develop a strong, powerful inner loving adult who is fully capable of not taking rejection personally and of setting limits against being used or taken advantage of. When you are taking loving care of yourself, you would never reject yourself by giving yourself away to avoid others’ rejection.

This holiday season, take a chance and devote yourself to being loving to yourself and others. Consciously shift out of your intent to protect against being hurt or used and into the intent to be open and caring with yourself and others. You will be deeply rewarded by a wonderful sense of inner peace, fulfillment, and personal power! This is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and others!

Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a best-selling author of 8 books, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® healing process. Are you are ready to heal your pain and discover your joy? Learn Inner Bonding now! Click here for a FREE Inner Bonding Course, and visit our website at www.innerbonding.com for more articles and help. Phone Sessions Available. Join the thousands we have already helped and visit us now!