The holidays are a stressful time for many. Many of us feel pressure to be everything to everyone, show up with a smile on our face, do our best to avoid conflict, and keep it all together.
I know for my best friend, this is the first Christmas without her dad, and there is no advice or words of wisdom that makes that OK, or any easier.
It’s very easy to put ourselves last at the holidays, making sure it’s brilliant for our kids, spouses, parents and co-workers, and silently suffering inside. All the ads make the holidays look like fun, a time to relax and receive, while the essence of the holidays is gratitude and compassion. Compassion all around, for ourselves and others…many send out holiday cards full of smiles, while on the inside they are hiding their truth. Imagine if we were all honest for the holidays? We didn’t over spend, over visit, over party, over sob, we just showed up real and gave ourselves a big hug. Wouldn’t that be nice? And because we live in the real world, here are a few things we can do to avoid the obligatory stress and overwhelm.
Self Care! Stay to your healthiest routine as much as possible. If you exercise daily, make that a priority. Get enough rest, stick to your normal bedtime, eat healthy, maybe even do a ‘before holiday detox’ in preparation for the temptations to come. Damage Limitation!
Don’t be afraid to ask for help or delegate. You don’t have to wear a cape. (Although all my bf’s know…I love a fabulous cape!)
Don’t be afraid to say no. Be authentic. If your schedule is full, it’s full. If you’re exhausted, take a rain check. Taking care of yourself is the best gift you can give anyone. It’s when we try to do it all, we loose our sanity, our health suffers, mental and physical, and we can fall into resentment.
Have a happy and a healthy…plan ahead as best you can, and have compassion for yourself. Any decision is the right decision when it comes from your heart. Check in with your truth and you’ll be amazed at how good you feel, and how lovingly you show up. Truth is the prettiest dress on the rack!