Let’s face it—the holidays are wonderful and beautiful, filled with good food and time spend with loved ones… but they can also be stressful. We’ve got 5 tips to help you actually relax this holiday season, even amidst the chaos. And make sure to sign up for our email newsletter here to get more health tips for a great holiday!
The weeks leading up to Christmas are always so peaceful, full of relaxing nights at home and no to-do lists…right? Not so much! They’re usually filled with running around looking for that perfect gift, or jumping from one holiday party to another (or maybe hosting one yourself), or rearranging schedules to make sure you see everyone over the holidays. Oh, and all of this on top of your full time job, raising kids, keeping the house clean, cooking meals… it’s no wonder it can get overwhelming and we can forget about the magic of the season.
We’re about a week away from Christmas, and today, make a commitment to take some time to mindfully relax these next couple weeks. Here are 5 amazing ways to do that.
It doesn’t matter if you have 1 person to buy for or 21, it can get stressful trying to find just the right gift for that special someone. But remember that it really isn’t the gift itself—it’s the thought. Consider making homemade gifts this year, like handmade ornaments or knitting a scarf. Or, bake up a storm in your kitchen and give the gift of delicious treats this season (our Holiday Nourish magazine has you covered with 8 great recipes – get it free here!). If you have a big family or a large group of friends, consider doing “secret santa” so you don’t have to buy for everyone. And keep it small—1 or 2 thoughtful gifts are much better than piling things into a bag because you feel you need to. Stop the stress and gift from the heart!
Take a Walk
When you feel like it’s all getting to be too much—you have 17 gifts left to wrap, 3 batches of cookies to bake and you need to make it to that holiday party!—take a breath. Stop what you’re doing and go for a quick walk around the block. It’s amazing what even 5-10 minutes of fresh air can do for your brain, and for your mental and emotional health. Take some deep breaths on your walk to really relax your central nervous system, and then remember to take one thing at a time. If you’re still feeling overwhelmed, try Rescue Remedy—an amazing homeopathic remedy that calms the entire nervous system. It’s available as a tincture or in pastilles which are easy to carry in your purse. This might even be a stocking stuffer for some people in your life!
Take Some You Time
This might be the most important tip. It can be easy to forget about you when you’re rushing around to get gifts for other people. You need to be taken care of just as much, if not more, at this time of year. Once a day, make sure you take 20 minutes to just relax. Whether that means a hot bath with Epsom salts, a soothing cup of tea (chamomile is amazing for calming the mind, and peppermint helps to soothe an uneasy tummy if you’re nervous or stressed), or maybe even taking a power nap—do it, and don’t feel guilty. It will help you be more productive the rest of the day!
Nourish Your Body
This time of year, we’re bombarded by sugary sweets, savoury snacks, heavy foods and lots of drinks. With holiday parties, Christmas dinners, and nights out with friends, the kinds of foods you’re eating might be out of your normal dietary preference, and they might cause some digestive distress. When your digestive system has to work harder to digest foods, it takes resources away from other areas of your body—like your stress response system, for example—making it easier to get overwhelmed and feel stressed. Plus, sugar wreaks havoc with your emotions, leaving you feeling high and then very, very low when you crash. Avoid all of this by indulging mindfully. Leave your treats for the things you really want, like grandma’s sugar cookies or your favourite holiday recipe. Make sure you keep your energy up with things like greens+, or try St. Francis Mineral Matrix to get 25 minerals in just one scoop. It makes a delicious hot drink mixed with cocoa—the recipe is in Discover the Power of Food! Or, if you know you’ll be indulging in something that’s not-so-nice to your tummy, take a digestive enzyme before your meal. And remember to include healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, and antioxidant-rich foods over the holiday season!
Remember What’s Important
Last but definitely not least: be mindful. Take 5-10 minutes a day and remember what’s really important this time of year. Seeing friends, spending time with family, or reconnecting with someone. Be grateful for the people in your life, and tell them! Take time for yourself and appreciate your health. And most of all, enjoy this season.
It can be easy to get lost in the hustle, bustle and stress, but with a bit of mindfulness, some pre-planning, and letting things go, you can be sure to survive the holidays happy, healthy, and grateful. Merry Christmas!
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