Now don't get me wrong, I love me some Christmas cheer as much as the next guy. However, it always seems that December flies by and we always have way too many things going on! Thus creating a perfect storm of #doallthethings to enjoy the holidays, but end up with failed expectations.
Step 1:Lower your expectations.
Well, that just sounds depressing! No. We are bombarded with advertisements and movies that show us what the holidays are "supposed to be." Who are they to tell us what makes a holiday?!? What do you remember from the holidays that were the best? Generally it's the little things. Baking cookies with Mom or spending Christmas Eve with all your relatives.
What I'm saying is, perhaps lower your expectations from what the media says YOUR holiday should be. We are real life. Not a movie. Do what makes your heart sing, not what the telly says you should be doing.
Maybe you don't make all 20,000 cookie recipies you intended. Instead, have the family or friends (the family you choose) over and ask them to each bring a batch of cookies and everyone can taste test each others. Bonus points if someone brings cocoa.
Step 2: Give yourself a Time Out.
You can say "No." Over comitting ourselves only causes extra stress in our lives. Cut back on the events and gift yourself an evening in. Take a hot bath with epsom salts or just enjoy a night on the couch with a good book and a hot beverage. Trust me, you deserve it.
Step 3: Be Active.
Are you sick of hearing this yet? I'm sure everyone everywhere has read this. Not only will exercise keep your holiday indulgences from totally f%&@#ing with your diet, it will help you sleep better AND more importantly it is proven to make you happier! Why do we all hate exerices if it does so much good for us?!
Make it fun! If exercise is a chore you hate, change what you do. If you hate running, do yoga. If you hate yoga, dance in your living room. If you can't stand any of that, a cleaning spree will not only makes the house look nice but will burn some calories too.
Step 4: REST.
This one is a biggie. We spend a lot of time during the holidays rushing around with a #doallthethings mentality we barely have time to take a breathe. I like to think the days are shorter and nights are longer for a reason in winter; to REST more!
Now I dont' just mean sleeping--however you really should be paying attention to how many hours you are actually getting bewteen the shopping and parties! There are other ways of "resting". Meditation, pranayma, yoga nidra or even just giving yourself permission to sit down.
One of my yoga teachers always started us in a mini savasana because she believed we do not get enough rest. If you are a yoga practitioner slow your practice down. Give yourslef a longer savasana. Your body needs it this time of year.
If yoga poses aren't your thing, give yourself permission to sit/lie down and just focus on your breathing. Place your hands on your chest and belly. How's your breathing right now? Shallow/Quick? Long/Full? Don't dwell on it, just observe. Then try inhaling to a count of six, hold for two and exhale for six. Do this several times then return to your regular breathe. How do you feel now?
Love & Light,
- Jenn Rose