It’s that time of the year again: for stress-eating, stress-shopping, STRESSING, etc.
But what if it wasn’t? What if, this holiday season, we feel even more at ease than we normally do. What if you took that extra time off to prioritize caring for yourself? What if you spent those holiday parties actually socializing and being present with your loved ones? What if you savoured all that delicious food and ate mindfully - enjoying each and every bite of the goodness, rather than wolf it down guiltily or be pre-occupied with how you’re going to work it off and get “back on track” once the New Year rolls in?
Chances are, you’d feel all the better for it. You’d be more energized and recharged. You’d be able to offer more love and support for those who love you back. You’d likely even lose a pound or two - rather than frantically gain the dreaded 5lbs of holiday “fat” - that’s right, turns out when you have a positive relationship with food, you can just enjoy it without any of the negative “consequences”.
Sounds pretty miraculous, doesn’t it? It can be, and it is - but it’s also incredibly simple.
As simple as:
Breathe. Take big deep belly breaths in and out through your nose whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed, and big oxygenating mouth breaths when you need a lift. Wherever, whenever - know that this practice is always available to you. You can always come back to the breath. Try focusing your attention inwards and repeat the mantra: “I feel I can manage whatever is happening right now.”
Be with it. Sit with the struggle, until the struggle turns to ease. Amber & I recently interviewed Vitina Blumenthal on our podcast and she explained beautifully the process of meditation and the benefits of simply sitting through whatever comes up. As Amber mentioned in our conversation: “You have to go through it in order to go through it”.
Take a walk. Accept when you need a moment of escape - and take it. Get yourself out in nature and with your ultimate guide: yourself. Walking can often the perfect remedy resource for healing, as sitting around thinking about things that make you feel anxious never helps. When you start moving - preferably in nature, your physical energy changes and rather than dwelling on that anxiety or stressful circumstances in your head, you can pay attention to nature. It helps you to see things more objectively, and oftentimes that tension within your body will be alleviated simply by walking.
None of the above require any fancy tools and should be easily accessible to you at whatever moment you may catch yourself falling into upsetting thoughts & feelings. Rather than doing “all of the things” this holiday, I’d love to invite you to join me in making ME a priority, and trusting that all the rest will pan out for the better thanks to our health & happiness.