As we approach the holiday season, let’s take a quick second and do a self-check.
How do you feel about the holidays? … Excited, stressed, anxious, frustrated?
The holidays emit SO many different feelings! Some based on family situations and others can be chalked up to current life stressors. Sometimes, the reality of the holidays doesn’t quite measure up to what we had envisioned. So, how can we be truly present amid the presents and turkey dinners?
Try these 3 ways this holiday season..
Prioritize and then Say “NO”
Reflect on past holiday seasons and think about what is important to you. It might be attending that one holiday party with your best friend. It could be having a conversation with your grandmother or attending a religious service. It could be reconnecting with a favorite sibling for drinks. Whatever it is, do those things and say no to other things.
It sounds simplistic, but it helps create calmness in this chaotic time of year where we feel that we must do ALL and be ALL which we don’t typically feel other times in the year. If there is an event that you feel that you need to make an appearance, but you aren’t thrilled about going, you can set boundaries. Think about how long you are going to stay. Who you will communicate with and who comes with you?
This relates to all aspects of the holiday season. If our minds are racing about what we need to do while we are trying to engage in another activity, it will leave us feeling rushed and stressed. It’s helpful to use the five senses to really engage with whatever you are doing. It’s about being mindful.
For example, if you are baking cookies: how does the dough feel in your hands? What do you smell and see around you? If someone is helping you, what are they saying to you? What does their face look like?
Focusing on the five senses is especially helpful when related to food and the holidays. Many times, we overeat and then feel regretful afterwards. Take a small bite of what you are eating and really savor the flavors. This will help you acknowledge are you eating just to eat or eating because you are hungry.
Listen to your body
Pay attention to what your body is telling you during the holidays. Sometimes we forget to do basic self-care such as making sure we are drinking enough water, getting enough rest, and exercising. If are traveling for the holidays, make sure you take time to get out of the car and stretch. When you are visiting with family, take a walk with them to enjoy the holiday decorations. Try to maintain as similar of a routine as you can such as when you go to sleep and when you wake up to help when you return to daily life post- holiday season.
Interested in learning more ways to be present this holiday season? Let’s talk more!