With the holiday season making its way in, we start feeling a call for thankfulness, connectivity, family time and friends gathering. With all of these comes the demands and hectic schedules of this busy season. During the holidays everything intensifies. We eat more, buy more, go around places and get together more than usual, which can leave us feeling less connected and grounded.
The demands that come with the end of the year season are pretty high: we see lots of people (some of which we do not like that much or just simply do not get along well with), we spend more time than usual in social settings that requires a whole lot of energy from us to keep the positivity and the smiles going! And let’s not forget the hassle of shopping (my personal least favorite!) particularly when we have an extensive list and are unsure of what to get with limited budgets. There is also a tendency for too much food and too many drinks more often than usual.
But this busy time of the year is also a great opportunity to reconnect to our purpose, to reflect on the work we have put in during the year, on all the positive accomplishments, and the projects on yet to come. This can be particularly true, IF we pace ourselves well and prepare ahead of time. So, with that in mind, here are some suggestions that not only make a lot of sense, but are also proven to keep us well balanced:
· Make sure to find ways that remind you to maintain healthy habits, like little notes or a special calendar with quotes. The right placement can work like a charm, too! For example, set your daily vitamins and supplements next to your coffee pot, leave the lavender next to your laptop, wear your mala beads! You get the idea – basically offer a little support to your brain by helping it make connections and making the tasks simple and logical. I personally struggle with my brain having too many tabs open because I do have a lot to get done, so finding constant reminders not only assures I get the task done, but knowing I wrote it down or that I will encounter what I need right in front of my face helps a lot to keep the anticipation at bay.
· Plan ahead to avoid rushing: be realistic and remember your priorities. My least favorite feeling ever is to feel rus. I seriously struggle with this so much that even seeing other rushing around me will give me major anxiety. Imagine that! The holidays seem to be a time that moves faster than most other season. So my best advice is to be kind to yourself, don’t demand more than you should. And like I tell myself every other day at work: “What I did not get to do today will still be here tomorrow”.
· Know when to say “no”. Reach out with honesty and kindness. I am a big advocate for upfront conversations on all sorts of topics, as long as kindness is the common ground. So don’t feel bad about disagreeing or not wanting to go that pointless gathering where you don’t connect with anyone. But maintain the honesty standard: don’t make up excuses! Get used to being comfortable owning facts and knowing that sharing your truth is a healthy practice. Plain and simply, just say “Sorry I cannot make it” and let that be the end of your sentence.
· Acknowledge your feelings and set aside differences when possible. This is a hot topic, particularly now a days with the state of our current affairs. kKnow when/where it is not worth it to give your energy out, let it go and send the person or the topic out with good intentions.
· Stick to a budget, do not over spend! There is no need to go overboard, and on this note: support local artist/crafters and/or get your internal artist out for some DIY projects that can make wonderful, thoughtful gifts.
Your children are also facing the same stressors, so teach them to take care of themselves and do what they need to stay balanced this holiday season…and breathe through it all.
Happy holidays to all!