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With the holiday season comes many gatherings that include food and drink that you may not normally be consuming in your day-to-day life. This can be a source of stress and anxiety for many people when they imagine the pressure of participating, while also still feeling their best and not being completely derailed in their health and wellness goals.
By intuitively listening to what your body needs, and what will bring you joy, you can have a fabulous time during the holidays and not feel like you’re missing out. Making choices that you will feel great about the next day while also relinquishing a bit of control is the balance we are looking for!
I want to share some ideas around achieving balance during a season that can feel overwhelming.
Crowding out is the concept of not taking away or restricting unhealthy foods, but adding in healthier options. For example, rather than not eating that piece of pie for dessert, eat the pie but also opt for an extra serving of veggies to make sure that your body is being nourished with rich nutrients and not just pumped with sugar.
Moving your body doesn’t have to be your typical 1-hour gym session at 7:00am. Maybe you opt for a long walk with a family member or friend, where you can catch up and have meaningful conversations that you normally wouldn’t have time for during a busy work week.
The holidays can be stressful not only on your physical body, but also on your emotional body. Subjects can be brought up by family members that you might not be comfortable speaking about. I challenge you rather than becoming upset, to hold a firm boundary and respectfully remove yourself from any situations that may cause you emotional distress. That could look like saying: “I respect your opinion and value you as a person, but I’m not comfortable talking about this, could you please change the subject?”
Many times there is a lot of pressure to stay completely off of your email or phone during the holidays and “unplug” from work and other duties. However, this often leads to major overwhelm for many when they return to a full inbox or tons of text messages to get back to. Consider checking email and texts very intermittently, and take 30 minutes here and there to reply to anything pressing, while leaving others to be tended to after the holidays. There’s nothing wrong with setting yourself up for success by minimizing potential overwhelm.
There is nothing wrong with removing yourself from social situations during the holidays for a few hours to recharge. Sometimes a short time out to take a bubble bath, read, of meditate can make you a much more enjoyable person to be around because you have taken personal time to decompress and are able to pour from a full cup rather than a drained battery.
More than anything, stay true to yourself, no one knows what you need more than yourself. Wishing you a wonderful holiday where you can relax, indulge a little, make connections with loved ones, and be grateful for all that this past year has brought you.
Pop in your earbuds and tune into this healing and calming frequency (trust me your brain will love it) whenever you feel overwhelmed or just need to chill:.