Christmas is the time of joy. But often the time runs away and we haven’t really enjoyed it. Let’s have a mindful Christmas this year and enjoy Christmas.
During Christmas we can enjoy the dark days which are lit up by beautiful Christmas lights. Christmas are public holidays and we can spend the days off with our loved ones. It should be a beautiful relaxing time. But many people tend to get very stressed during the holidays and the days before.
During Christmas people increase the alcohol intake, have shorter nights, eat lots of unhealthy foods and become stressed and unhappy. Let’s not do this anymore. Let’s be mindful and enjoy the time.
We have put together 9 tips how to have a mindful Christmas without getting carried away by the stress around you and the consumerism.
1. Be prepared
Often we get stressed because we are not prepared. We leave it to the last minute and then we don’t have enough time to get it all done. Plan in advance, not on the day. Have a plan. Write down your daily tasks. You can prepare a check list to make sure you won’t forget anything. If there is a lot to do, ask for help. As well, if you see others are struggling, offer your help. Often people are too scared to ask for help.
2. Morning meditation
A morning meditation helps us to stay calm and think clearly. It is easier to structure your thoughts. A morning meditation helps us to ground ourselves and get centered. A perfect start into each day. Start with 5-10 minutes. Recommended is a time of 30-60 min.
3. Enjoy the moment
We love to rush. Rush through life and live in the future or past instead of the present. The same is for Christmas. Often we just rush through the season. It’s only the beginning of December, but most of us have our minds focussed already on December 25th. Don’t rush through the season. Be in the now and enjoy the beautiful moments. Don’t stress yourself. Stay in the now.
4. Keep your food balanced
There are so many yummy foods in the stores and the Christmas markets during the Christmas season. But unfortunately these foods are often very unhealthy for our body. We eat more of those things that we would normally avoid. For a mindful Christmas, don’t eat too much food. Only eat as much as your body needs. There are many healthy options as well. Cheating is always okay, as long it is in balance. Don’t change your diet to 100% unhealthy for 1 month. Keep it balanced. Prepare some healthy snacks. Try to bake some vegan and sugar-free cookies. There are many option to skip refined sugar and use honey and dates as sweeteners.
5. Mindful drinking
Christmas season is often flu season. But there are many events and lots of alcohol drinking opportunities appear. Keep in mind that alcohol weakens your immun system. Don’t drink more than 1 standard drink a day. There are many healthy options to keep yourself warm and happy during the Christmas season. Try a hot ginger, lemon and honey tea to boost your immun system instead to weaken it.
6. Skip electronics
For a mindful Christmas, try to stay away from your electronics for a bit. Phones and laptops carry us away to other places, times and people. Try to stay in the now. Play some board games with your family or friends. Scrabble, Charade or Monopoly can be fun for the whole family. Enjoy the laugh and the moment. Don’t use your phone to document it. Just be in the now. As well, you can bake some healthy vegan cookies together. Have a meal together and much more.
7. Thoughtful shopping
Christmas is the king of consumerism. We love to buy presents and when we are already in the shop why shouldn’t we buy something nice for ourselves? The shops have specials on. We are exposed to tons of advertising during December. It can be challenging to say no. But often these are just emotional buys and we don’t really need the items we buy. Or we only wear it once and never again. For a mindful Christmas, ask yourself if you really need it. Does the person you buy the present for really needs it? Be thoughtful with your buys. Think of alternative presents: give time and experiences instead of things.
8. Keep breathing
The reason why we feel stressed is often that we simply forget to breath. We breath only shallow. Only into the top bit of the lungs. And in some situations we don’t breath at all. This false breathing increases our stress level. Our body can switch into a survival mode during this. So, take a moment and notice your body. Observe your breathing. Do you breath? Breath regular and deep. All the way down below your belly button. Observe your breathing several times per day.
9. Be upside down
This is a fun tip. We store all our anger and stress in the lower part of the body. Mainly in the belly area and below. As we are walking and sitting all day long, the energy stays in that part of the body. The trick is to lift this energy/feeling to the upper body. This changes the negative energy into more positive energy. If you feel stressed and angry, let’s get you upside down. Do something fun: a handstand, a headstand, a cartwheel or go to a trampoline park for some flips.
You will feel so much better after it.
Enjoy your mindful Christmas.
What works best for you for a mindful Christmas? Do you have some more tips? Comment below.