1.) Changes focus from dwelling on "problems" to finding and/or creating new possibilities.
2.) Activates right brain and creates new neural pathways to help move out of old, dysfunctional conditioning. Repetition used in rituals and anchoring activities strengthens those pathways.
3.) Connects participants to global community and/or ancient wisdom traditions so that there is a sense of something larger to help with feelings of isolation and helplessness. This increases feelings of safety and security on something more enduring than what is offered by our dominant consumer culture.
4.) Provides opportunity to gather your tribe (in person or virtual) for support as well as witnessing and honoring significant milestones with ritual. This essential practice has been largely missing from our modern lives and is powerful juju for those in-between times! Especially for rites of passage with no cultural ceremonies -- like divorce or moving.
5.) Strengthens family bonds with shared, fun, joyful, creative project while bringing much needed levity to lighten up stressful aspects of transitions.
6.) Awakens play for overly serious adults and allows children to share their gifts in this vitally important realm. See the volumes of recent research by very serious scientists on why we need to incorporate this seemingly frivolous practice into our daily lives.
7.) Helps relax constrictions, tension and stuckness to allow for greater ease, flow and expansiveness. Also shifts from a sharp focus to a softer one that allows for more subtle, symbolic archetypal insights to emerge from the depths of the unconscious.
8.) Encourages SLOWING down and taking a rest from our overly fast paced lifestyles (if done mindfully vs the way we tend to do holi-daze in recent times) Rejuvenates and replenishes reserves of joyful energy. A big contrast to needing to recover after the Halloween through New Year's frenzy of spending too much money, eating too much sugar and relentless rushing from one event to the next!
9.) Exercises and expands creativity (could involve preparing food, music, decorations, games, special clothing, cards, gifts, designing a unique ritual or tradition - depending on how much time and energy is available without involving feelings of overwhelm)
10.) Shows how to reverence as well as let go of the old, prepare for and magnetize the new while enjoying and deepening into the present moment.
11.) Honors chaos and mystery so that there is a greater acceptance of the natural and inevitable cycles of change. Also enlivens curiosity and supports willingness to surrender vs wasting time and energy trying to "figure out" and control.
12.) Discovery of gifts as part of celebration shifts resentment into gratitude as well as empowering the participants.
13.) Fun and games are actually more effective as well as enjoyable ways of navigating change than hard work and effort!