The holidays can be such a lovely time of year. They can also bring social pressure, overwhelm, consumerism, and guilt. There’s so much merriment, so much anticipation, and yet…the holidays can also feel like a lot of pressure to preform, to conform, and to consume.
Let’s navigate this season with our sanity and sense of inner peace intact.
Think of Thanksgiving as the model it could be – a celebration of gratitude for life, family and friends – rather than the frenzied weeks of hyper-commercialism and stress it has become.
- I urge you to do a Bedtime Gratitude Challenge with me. You up for it? As we lay down to sleep for the night, let’s spend 1-3 minutes giving thanks and gratitude for everything the day has blessed us with. (ex. warm bed, full belly, my children, the stranger that gave me a compliment, the love I feel). Some research shows that the experience of gratitude can induce a sense of relaxation, improve the immune system, and decrease blood sugar. Plus it’s just a great habit to cultivate, right? We can bring the whole family in and do it together with the kids, too. It’s so interesting to hear from your child’s point of view about what they are grateful for.
- Instead of being overwhelmed or exhausted by the many demands of the holidays, we can take a different approach – one involving more “being” and less “doing”. The results could mean we connect more fully with our holiday experiences, and our life in general, and we begin to feel more alive and present.
- Take time each day to stop and to be present with yourself and life, just as it is. Bring attention to the sensations of your own breath and body and allow them to flow naturally as you simply pay kind attention to the experience.
I hope above all, we can have kindness and compassion (a little “holiday spirit”) for ourselves. Especially when we don’t do things “perfectly.” Or we forget to do any of the above or anythings else we meant to do. Inner peace exists outside the domain of time. We are all learning to connect and “be” with what is here. I hope these simple tips will bring you a deeper, richer connection through the holidays and with life itself.