The holiday season can bring out the best and worst in people. It’s the most wonderful and stressful time of the year and for some people it’s just plain hard.
Other times you’re so busy baking, planning, shopping, decorating and so on that you forget to even too enjoy the holiday season and before you know it, the season is over.
Whatever your crutch this year, I’ve compiled my best tips to help you be more mindful and present this holiday season.
How to be more mindful this holiday season:
- Practice mindful breathing – This is a great way to handle any negative emotions or stress around the holiday season. Start by taking 10 deep breaths. Breathe in for 5 counts and out for another 5. This is a great way to measure how deep your breathe is. While doing your deep breaths, focus on one thing that you’re grateful for. This can have a really calming effect on our moods and help put things into perspective.
- Show compassion – It’s time to take a step out of ourselves and focus on the people around us. That’s what the holidays are for after all. But really pay attention to not just those in your circle but people on the street too. It’s true that you never know what other people are going through and the holidays can be a tough time for some or just plain stressful. Be conscious of how you’re actions reflect to those around you and just be kind. Go the extra mile for a stranger, help your grandma in the kitchen. Do what you can for others. It’ll warm your heart and theirs, trust me.
- Learn to say “no” – This is a good habit to have during the whole year but can be particularity helpful during the holidays. So many parties and gatherings and tasks to do is what can lead to the majority of holiday stress. Make it a goal to listen to your body and emotions and know when you need a break. If you would rather stay in and watch a Hallmark movie, then feel free to say no to that outing. If someone asks you if you can bring a dish but you know you won’t have time or the energy to prepare it, say no. If you can’t take care of yourself you’re going to have a lousy holiday.
- Eat mindfully – The holidays are prime time to stuff our faces, and while I’m all for indulging a little bit, it’s easy to go overboard. Practice sitting down when you eat, chewing a bite thoroughly before taking another. Slow down and enjoy the food you’re eating. That way you’ll know when you’re full and you can practice tip number 3 by saying “no” to more food.
- Give consciously – Starting with black Friday to Boxing Day, the holidays are all about spending money and things. This is an incredibly dangerous thing because I have definitely been sucked into the black whole of deals that is black Friday. More often than not we buy things we don’t need and we end up having too much stuff or just throwing it away. The holidays should not be about things but about people. This can reflect in your gift giving this holiday season. Not only for the people you are shopping for but also for the people who made these gifts. You can check out my ethical gift guide here and my zero waste gift ideas here.
Those are just a few of my tips on how I practice being more mindful this time of year!
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