5 Mindfulness Tips to Help You Navigate through Christmas Stress and Overwhelm with Ease
The Christmas holiday season in essence is a time for joy, celebration, and magic. Whilst the focus is really about presence, connection, love and kindness, for many, it can also bring an additional dose of stress and overwhelm. Between juggling family gatherings, shopping for gifts and dinner celebrations, and managing a packed schedule, it’s easy to feel like you are swimming in a sea full of additional responsibilities, obligations and expectations.
Including mindfulness practices into your routine can offer a much needed anchor during the Christmas stress. This is why I am sharing five tips to help you re-centre yourself and have some sort of self care routine so you can navigate this period with calm and presence:
1. Begin your Day with Intention
Before diving into your to-do list, take a few minutes to set a positive tone for the day.
You can do this by listening to a meditation, gentle yoga stretching or movement, simply enjoying sipping a quiet cup of tea or coffee, and /or state some positive affirmations. This way of starting allows you to ease into the day mindfully.
2. Create Moments of Stillness
Amidst the stress and busy schedule, make space for moments of stillness and quiet. Disconnect to Reconnect. Whether it’s a few minute breathing exercise, a short walk in nature, a quick dance or a few moments of silence and doing nothing, find time to pause and recentre yourself. These moments can bring back balance and restore your energy.
If you would like to have a readily available 3 minute breathing exercise, download this “Breathing Space Meditation” here.
3. Set Boundaries
Yes, It is okay to say NO.
You dont have to attend every activity you have been invited to. You are no good to anyone and yourself if you make too many commitments and over extend yourself. Prioritise your wellbeing by setting boundaries around your time and energy. Saying no with respect and gratitude of course, will remove unnecessary stress and allow you to focus on what truly matters to you. It will allow you to be more present for your loved ones.
I would suggest to set your priorities so then you can define your boundaries better. For example, for me is more about focusing on meaningful connections rather than detailed plans and big feasts. Simplicity and quality time spent with loved ones, rather than elaboration and big parties.
4. Single Tasking
In a world that glorifies multi-tasking, I suggest you try practising concentration on one activity at a time. This is mindfulness in action. Whether it’s decorating the tree or home, wrapping gifts, watching a Christmas movie, or preparing / enjoying a meal. Being totally present with an activity can reduce feelings of overwhelm and bring feelings of contentment.
5. Set Realistic Expectations and Embrace Imperfection
Manage expectations for yourself and what you expect from others. Understand that perfection and ‘flawless’ are not the goals of this season. The goal of the season is joy, peace, calm, kindness, presence and connection. Embrace imperfections, laugh at things that do not go as ‘expected’, and make sure you enjoy the moments with loved ones.
And Remember .....
Practicing mindfulness reminds us to be kind to yourself, find balance, and focus on what is truly important amidst the demands of life; in this case the demands during the Christmas season. By integrating these mindfulness tips into your daily life, you can navigate the Christmas season with greater ease, calm and joy. This is priceless!
Wishing you a peaceful and mindful holiday season
Just remember, the true spirit of Christmas lies in your heart. – ‘The Polar Express’
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I facilitate mindfulness courses that help you navigate through stress and overwhelm so that you can lead a calmer, happier, more peaceful and meaningful life. You can also learn more about mindfulness here