The silly season is certainly upon us. It is time to pause, take a deep breath and slow down.
For most of us Christmas feels like a speeding train with no brakes! There are many demands placed around you, your family, work, school and the list goes on. Everyone rushes to ‘fit it all in before Christmas’ which leads to feeling stressed, anxious and overwhelmed.
I hope you feel inspired by 1 or all of the secrets listed below to help you enjoy a more peaceful and soulful Christmas –
1. Keep a little notepad or journal.
If you write down all your to do lists in one handy place it will help you feel more organised so you are not trying to remember 50++ things in your head every day. Write down all the people you need to buy gifts for. Shop online where you can, or better still support local business owners and avoid the overcrowded shopping centres. Plan in advance as much as possible the must-do activities for work or school so they are in the diary and no last minute surprises add to your stress levels or overwhelm. Set an intention each morning when you wake that you are going to have a peaceful, soulful Christmas (or something similar) and take big deep breaths before you get out of bed. This will help you feel more in control of your day and calmer.
This is exactly the time of the year you need this reminder the most, when things feel a little crazy. Please remember to put yourself at the top of the list. If you keep up your normal self-care routine with exercise, meditation, healthy foods, water etc. you will feel better equipped to deal with any added stress or responsibilities. It is a common mistake to make, allowing yourself to slip to the bottom of the list ‘so you can get everything done’ but at what cost? Wouldn’t you prefer to head into Christmas feeling calm and energised? Put yourself back to the top of the list, take care of your needs first and then everything will feel easier. You matter. You are much more important than the to-do list! Self-care may also mean saying no. If you have too much on it is ok to decline a social invitation here or there. Push it back to January when things are less hectic.
3. Quiet time is essential.
Find a quiet space in your home where you can spend 10 minutes on your own to do a meditation or practice your deep breathing. Put your feet up or you may prefer to lay down with a good book. Whatever it looks like for you, notice how you feel once you’ve had this time and when you’re done re-join the festivities. Let go of any guilt around this, this is necessary. If you are around negative people, you may need these little breaks to decompress and ground yourself. You will feel a lot calmer and not as reactive.
4. Be present.
When you spend time with loved ones this Christmas (however that looks for you, whether it is with your friends or family), be truly present. What I mean by that is active listening, looking into their eyes and enjoying the moment. Life is short and the more you embrace these precious moments the happier, calmer and more relaxed you will feel.
5. Laugh every day.
This time of year is meant to be enjoyed. If you are looking forward to having family or friends visiting during the festive season or perhaps a more intimate gathering, make sure you allow plenty of time for fun and the space to create meaningful Christmas memories.
Take time out to focus on Christmas traditions that you and your loved ones enjoy. If it is time for you to create some new traditions this year, ensure they are going to bring a big smile to your face! Traditions are wonderful as they help to bring family together and the kids really enjoy them because they love rituals. It helps them feel secure with a sense of belonging. Here are some examples to get you going –
• Christmas baking;
• Playing board games;
• Swimming at the beach on Christmas morning;
• Watching a Christmas family movie with home-made popcorn on Christmas Eve;
• Make your own Christmas cards and write them together;
• Take a trip into the city to see the window displays and lights.
Sending you much love, happiness and blessings for a wonderful Christmas and an amazing 2019.