The holidays have begun. It’s a time of year that is know for its busy nature that can contribute to stress levels beyond the norm. You likely have several party invitations collecting on your counter, a long list of people on your Christmas card list, and the daunting task of braving crowds as you shop for gifts for your loved ones.
And all of this is added to your normal every day life. It can be overwhelming to say the least!
As my gift to you, I want to share some of my favorite ways to navigate this busy time of year, making this season less stressful, more enjoyable and a time you will remember with fond memories.
My secret weapons include …
Making an effort to be present
It’s almost a reflex when we have a free moment to pick up our phones and scroll through Facebook or email. Do you do this? One way to dodge this tendency when you are with your loved ones is to leave your electronics in another room. Don’t allow yourself to pick up the phone and disengage from communication with the people around you.
When I’m feeling particularly distracted, what helps me is focusing on my senses. What do I smell? What do I hear? What do I feel or see? Stopping to think through what is going on around you brings you into the present moment. It’s a wonderful tool to use to dial in and be present – during the holidays and year-round.
Giving up expectations
A large portion of the stress we feel during this season is our own expectation that everything must be perfect. While that would be lovely, gathering with extended family in one location is bound to be accompanied by something going awry. Dropping the expectation of perfection allows you to meet unexpected outcomes with less stress. Spend your energy finding gratitude in your circumstances and enjoying your opportunities.
Finding time for movement
It is so very important to keep movement in your schedule, no matter how “busy” you feel. A brisk walk or other forms of movement will refresh your mind and your body. If it’s cold out, bundle up in your favorite coat and scarf and head out to walk alone or with someone you enjoy. Make a point of getting some time outside in nature, breathing in fresh air, while burning off some calories and raising your heart rate.
If you find yourself dreading the normal pattern of the holidays and the common result of beginning the new year carrying added weight, I want to encourage you to connect with a community.
As humans we are actually more successful when we don’t try to go it alone! Having a community that you can reach out to for support or to celebrate your wins will make all the difference.
And using my book can give you further support toward success. Check it out!