Creating a Stress Free Holiday
The holidays are among us – a time of year that’s known for being busy and being constantly busy can lead to quite the load of stress.
You likely already have several invitations to gatherings collecting on your counter, a long list of people you need to send holiday cards to, and the daunting task of braving the shopping mall crowds to find the gifts for your loved ones. All of this, on top of your normal every day life. It can be overwhelming to say the least.
I wanted to share with you some of my favorite ways to navigate this busy, stressful time of year and make this holiday season a lot more enjoyable and less stressful so that you can look back on this holiday with happy memories.
A few secret weapons of mine include…
- Make great effort to be present. It can be difficult, I understand. It’s almost a reflex to pick up our phones and scroll through Facebook or our email when we have a free moment. One way I like to avoid this is to leave my phone in another room. Don’t even allow yourself the temptation to pick up your phone and disengage from communicating with your loved ones. When I’m feeling particularly scatter-brained, what really helps ground me is focusing on my senses. What do I smell? What do I hear? What do I feel? Stopping and thinking through what’s going on around you at that very moment really brings you into the present moment unlike anything else. Try this easy tool to use to dial in and be present – and is a great tool to use year-round, not just during the holidays!
- Give up those expectations. A lot of the stress we put on ourselves this season lies in the notion that we expect things to be perfect. That would be lovely, of course – but if you are putting your entire extended family in one house, it is bound to have something go sideways. Therefore, making an effort to drop the expectations of perfection will allow you to be prepared for when something may spring up. If you look hard enough, there is joy to be found in each situation, so even when things don’t go exactly as planned – spend your energy finding gratitude in your circumstances and enjoying as much of your time as you possibly can. Tis the season!
- Find time to move. It’s incredibly important to keep exercise and movement in your schedule, no matter how busy you may feel. Even if it’s just a brisk walk after lunch or dinner – make it a habit to bundle up in your favorite scarf and winter coat to go for a walk alone to clear your mind, or with someone you enjoy being around. Be sure that you are getting your time outside in nature, breathing in fresh air, while burning off some calories and keeping your heart rate up.
If you find the holidays particularly stressful, read another blog post of mine which gives you some extra tips to Stop the Holiday Stress with these 11 Stress Busting Tips
Now that you are in the spirit of the season, join me for 12 Days of Wellness! Its a fun, holiday themed healthy program to keep your energy up and stress down for the holiday season. You can join me here: 12 Days of Wellness
I wish you a happy, healthy holiday season ahead!
Gaylene Gomez, NNCP, C.H.N.