Can you believe it’s almost 2016? It’s the most wonderful time of year, and I’m getting so excited for all the festivities and quality time with family and friends but I have to admit the holidays can also make me a little stressed. These are supposed to be times of celebration, togetherness, and happiness but they can bring challenges to our physical and emotional wellbeing. All the holiday parties and activity can derail our healthy habits and leave us feeling less than our best once all the magical moments have passed. Here are seven tips for staying healthy and happy during this season of joy.
Stick to Your Ayurvedic Daily Routine – The foundation of your healthy holiday season is your Ayurvedic daily routine. Sip warm water throughout the day, honor your healthy sleep habits, keep regular meal times and do your best to avoid late night eating and snacking.
Stay Active – Regular exercise may be difficult to fit in during the busy holiday season but keeping active is essential. Include family and friends in your favorite yoga class or simply take a walk after holiday meals. During a time when we are prone to become more sedentary make movement a part of your holiday tradition.
Think Small and Eat Mindfully – At holiday events use the smallest plate available. Survey the spread before filling up your plate and make your plate with intention. Choose your favorites in small amounts and savor each bite. Slow down, enjoy the celebration and remember why you love this time of year so much.
Remember Self-Care – Holidays can be a stressful time. Try to anticipate sources of stress and use your tools to manage them. If you are feeling overwhelmed simply stop and take a few minutes to breathe deep. Schedule in down time for yourself. Don’t feel guilty; you have to take care of yourself before you can take of others.
Don’t Over Commit – Many people over commit, try to please everyone, rush around and do too much. It’s okay to politely decline some invitations and enjoy the fewer commitments you make.
Be of Service – The holidays are called the season of giving, and yet quite often it turns into the season of consumption. There are many ways to give this holiday season. Several years ago I picked an organization to volunteer at during the holidays. This will be my fifth year of volunteering and I can tell you there’s no quicker way to shift from being stressed-out and overwhelmed to feeling connected and having purpose than to serve others.
Create a Meaningful Ritual – Many holiday traditions are based on rituals that were designed to help us connect to the seasons and the passage of time in meaningful ways. On Christmas Eve my sister and I would drive around and look at the best Christmas lights. Even when I don’t spend the holiday with her I still love to do this as a way to connect with a small ritual I love. Today even though we seem to travel further and further away from these roots each year remember to keep it simple and create and participate in activities that will remind you of why you love this season.
Most of all Have Fun, Laugh and Enjoy the Holidays.