Wellness Tips for the HolidaysBeverly Echols, MA, LBSW, LPC

1. Spend your time intentionally

You do not have to say yes to every single invitation to dinner or a gathering. It can be a real drain on your physical and spiritual being to rush around trying to please everyone and be in all places at once. It is okay to say no.

2. Practice gratitude

This is a wonderful way to stay in a healthy mindset and not lose sight of what is important to you. Make a gratitude list every single day during the holidays. Being grateful for your health, your family, your friends, and anything else that you appreciate about your personal circumstances can remind you to keep positive.

When you share that high frequency of thankfulness and love with others, it can make a serious difference to your life.

3. Practice being mindful

Do not let little annoyances and anxieties become big things. By remaining mindful throughout each day, you can ensure that you maintain that connection to your better self. Any time you feel overwhelmed or as though you are taking on too much of other people’s energy or expectations, check in with your breath and your body. By dropping into yourself and finding that present moment awareness, you will learn to listen to what you need in each moment.

4. Practice forgiveness and letting go

Family can be one of the biggest triggers of all for many people. If you find yourself in a situation with a family member who tends to criticize you or know that petty issues will come up during the holidays, prepare yourself ahead of time by protecting your energy and making the decision not to be personally offended.

True forgiveness takes time and work but deciding not to let someone’s comments ruin your family day is something you can control. Try to find compassion and perspective, this will help you to sail through any unpleasant moments with ease.

5. Holistic health

Do not allow the holidays to be an excuse for bad sleeping habits, overeating, or stopping your exercise routine. It is just as important if not more to stay active, eat well, and get adequate sleep during this time. Try to schedule at least short meditations each morning, daily walks, yoga stretching and exercises, and a good night’s sleep. Prioritize the health of your mind, body, and spirit always. Without it, you cannot function at your best. 

6. Remember what is important

If the holidays fill you with dread and stress you out, decide to change that this year. This year more than ever we need to remember what matters in life. For those of us who cannot be with loved ones, or who are only going to see them through a zoom call or computer screen, we can still appreciate and embrace the essence of gratitude and togetherness, which is what the holiday period is about.

It is about giving thanks and coming together to share experiences and appreciate the people in our lives. It is about reflecting on the year and honoring our triumphs however big or small. It is about thinking of those less fortunate and offering them what we can, whether that be financial support, or simply love, hope, and a prayer.

Remember: Maintaining spiritual wellness during the holidays is about knowing what is right for you and having the confidence and certainty to follow that path and act upon it.

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