Tips for a Healthy Body and Soul This Unique Holiday Season
The decorations are up, christmas songs are playing and the overall tone of this holiday season is cheerful. And at the same time, all the extra busyness of it all can really take its toll on our physical health. It’s no surprise that collectively, we tend to get sick with colds and flu, gain weight and find old unwanted habits around food or alcohol creep in this time of year.
Now I’ve written my fair share of articles on how to stay healthy during the holidays but I’d be remiss to not to acknowledge that the level of stress and anxiety is even more palpable this year than ever before. The truth is that no matter where you sit on the political spectrum, this has no doubt been a time of intense emotion. The energy has been frenetic and we have all been responding in different ways. While it goes without saying that we should commit to tending to our basic self care needs like healthful eating, sufficient sleep and exercise, every fiber in my being as a holistic health coach calls on me to share some tips that get to the heart (or shall we say to the soul) of the matter.
So here are my Top 3 Tips for Cultivating True Health this Unique Holiday Season:
1) Be Present – What you feel is what you feel, so it’s important to be authentic with what you are really experiencing and honor all of it. If it’s sadness, fear or anger, avoiding, numbing or distracting ourselves only locks the suffering in and creates greater stress. While it seems paradoxical, It’s when you resist your emotions that you’ll feel trapped them. When we stay awake and mindful of whatever painful emotions come up, the intensity will eventually dissolve and we can become more open and creative to ways of taking care of ourselves in a positive way. So when you are having a tough moment, you can begin by naming the emotion, asking gently what is happening inside me? what needs my attention? And while it might seem uncomfortable at first, being fully present with our emotions, creates the inner strength and resiliency we need for healing what ails us.
2) Make Inner Peace Your First Priority – I always say self care is only hard when you live a frenzied life. So take time several times throughout your day to pause by focusing on your breathing to come into the present moment. Notice when your thoughts keep you living in the past or worrying about the future. Find ways to consciously relax and rejuvenate every day like yoga, walks in nature, listening to music, meditation or reading inspirational quotes. Putting ourselves in a relaxed state is perhaps the single most important key to health and well-being.
3) Seek Goodness – Remember that there is so much good in the world even if its really hard to see sometimes. And if you’re obsessed with 24 hour news channels these days it’s really hard to see, yet alone feel the good in life. So while I’m not advocating being blissfully ignorant, its important to appreciate how much you’re allowing the constant negative media to contribute to your impending sense of doom. Try taking a break from all that and choose to feed your brain stories that affirm our basic goodness and common humanity. Be selective abut what kinds of messages and images you allow in. This applies to TV, radio, social media as well as the people in your life. I myself have minimized exposure to fear-based content and those who tend to be negative about other people. One of my favorite ways to use media as an antidote to stress and negativity is watching inspirational TED Talk videos.
And here’s another one that has proven to be a game changer. Every day I set an intention to find the good and see it around me. I remind myself that my perspective is MY choice.
I hope that’s helpful to you my friends.
And a reminder that the early bird for my January 2017 Integrative Weight Loss Group Coaching Program ends in less than 1 week. Check out the details here: https://yourdeliciousbalance.leadpages.co/winter-2015-group-coaching-/
Do you or someone you love need inspirational know how for heart healthy cooking? Sign up for my upcoming Cooking Classes here: https://yourdeliciousbalance.com/events/
To your health and happiness,