How to psychologically survive the holidays!

How to psychologically survive the holidays!

The holiday time can be stressful for many.  See below for 7 foolproof steps to maximize holiday enjoyment, and avoid burnout!

1. Meditate
As early in the day as possible center yourself by meditating for two to five minutes.  Sit quietly, feet planted on the ground, with your palms up.  Breathe in for five seconds, and breathe out for five seconds.  Watch your thoughts as though they are clouds passing one by one in the sky.  Do not attach to any one thought.  Instead, simply begin to notice what noise is going on in your mind.

2. Do not over consume
Do not let yourself get over consumed by consumption.  This is the season of endless shopping and materialism.  One can feel as though they are worthless if they cannot afford to buy all of their family and friends extravagant gifts.  Spend less, and write a more detailed and meaningful card.  Buy a few small mini presents and combine.  Make a homemade present.

3. Reflect on who and what you are most grateful for
Make plenty of room on your mental calendar to reflect daily on who and what you are most grateful for.  Spread the love; don’t waste it by not saying anything!  Tell your loved ones specifically what you appreciate about them, and why you love them so.   Sharing your love and appreciation is something that is often overlooked, and it usually leads to more intimacy, trust, and connection in the relationship.

4. Confront from a place of “I”
Confront your family members, and practice better communication skills at the same time!  Instead of swallowing your anger, which feels terrible, and can make you feel sick, express it!  Studies show that it can be dangerous to internalize all of your stress and negativity.  Stress can cause cellular inflammation, which can result in disease.  Instead of sitting resentfully by, compassionately confront your family member.  Always start from a place of “I”. “I felt hurt when…”  This way you can express your true feelings and get that weight off your chest.  By speaking from a place of “I”, you invite less defensiveness from the offending party, and hence they are better able to hear you.

5. Anchor your Strengths
Imagine that you are in a helicopter looking down at yourself.  Reflect on this past year. How did you do?  How could you have been better?  At what times did your life feel the most meaningful and happy?  What times were the most difficult?  What events where going on when you were the most happy?  The saddest?  Who were the cast of characters around you?  What were they saying?  Doing?  By noticing exactly what was going on when things were going especially well you can then replicate those experiences.  Vow to do more of what felt meaningful and connecting.  Anchor that strength!

6. Seek out the sunlight
Make time every day to go outside and nourish your body with some sunlight.  Combat symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder, like sluggishness and depression, by getting as much sunlight / Vitamin D as possible.

7. Practice Self Care
Make sure to practice and implement any self care rituals you enjoy.  You absolutely deserve it.  Every interaction is a chance to uplift.  Make sure that you are rested, and not constantly stressed, so that everyone gets to experience the best version of you.  Spend some quality down time alone appreciating and enjoying the wonder of you!!!