Making the Most of the Holiday Season
By Michelle Sala, Certified Integrative Health Coach
The holiday season can be both joyful and stressful and for some downright depressing. Too much emphasis is put on the perfect decorations, gifts, food and even what we wear! Many people are dealing with chronic illness or relationship problems which leaves us feeling alone and not fully able to enjoy the season. There is also the pressure of New Year’s Resolutions and goals – to lose weight, get fit, get finances in order, get a new job, complete projects, etc. It can all be overwhelming.
No matter what the state of your life now, take stock in what is good in your life. We can always find one thing to be grateful for every day. Having an attitude of gratitude will cause chemical changes in your brain that will make you feel better.
If finances are an area of stress for you, simplify your gift list. Let your friends and family know that you are reducing your gift list this year, but let them know how much they mean to you today and all through the year.
Spend quality time with the people that matter to you the most. If you are unable to spend time with out of town family, invite a couple people you know that are also in the same position as you. Make a simple meal, play cards or board games, and listen to festive music. Sometimes the relationships we choose are just as meaningful or more than the relationships we are born into. Some of my favorite holidays have been when we invited non-family and friends who do not have family nearby.
Don’t let the holiday season derail your healthy eating efforts. It’s tempting to eat all the goodies that are only available this time of your but you may spend the rest of next year paying for it! Fill up on fresh veggies, take just a bite or two of your holiday favorites, and volunteer to bring a healthy dish when you’re invited to someone’s home.
Take some quiet time for yourself during this busy season. Take time to read a book, get a massage, and/or meditate. Try to maintain your regular exercise schedule. If the holiday season has you feeling especially blue, please seek out professional help. That is the best gift you can give yourself.
A New year awaits us all with possibilities that we do not even know of yet! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all!