Well, Happy Holidays! While this is a season of togetherness, sharing and love, it is also such a chaotic time of year. I wanted to open up and speak a bit on the stresses and pressure I feel and I’m sure many of us share during this time. With the holiday season approaching this time around I was feeling more overwhelmed than usual. It’s certainly not a new observation that with this season comes stress along with extra financial obligations, splitting your time with family and friends, meeting expectations at work and just presenting as overall great and happy.
I’ve created a small list of things that have worked for me to ease up on myself and what I plan to grab at when feeling this way over the next couple weeks and on into daily life. Remember to take care of yourself and be gentle with others as we get through Holiday Tenderness and enter the new year together. Cheers and well wishes to you all!
No. 1: Dance.
Dancing and continuous movement raises the heart rate, causing the body to release feel-good endorphins into our bloodstream. It also helps to reduce levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. So I really feel a positive physical and emotional shift.
I created a playlist here that hits an array of feelings to dance through. You’ll find Leonard Cohen and Talking Heads to Mitski and James Blake — some personal old favorites and some ‘right nows’ that make me feel energized in a new way.
No. 2: Control what you can.
No. 3: Tech timeouts.
I’ve applied one simple rule into my daily: No phone the first hour i’m awake and the last hour before I go to sleep. Of course, I know this is also easier said than done and I haven’t been perfect about this rule every day but I have I’ve found found some more consistency in this to help me get more out of each day and leaves me feeling not only more at ease but more accomplished.
No. 4: Small self treats.
For others maybe it’s reading a book, playing a video game or watching a few episodes of your favorite show. Simply, identify something that can exist as a piece of happiness without guilt and act on those small indulgences when you do have moments to yourself.
No. 5: Release.
And lastly, I suggest communicating your feelings. There's a lot of expectation that lies within the season to impress or just generally be ‘okay.’ Remember that it’s always good to express yourself and be gentle with each other, most likely others are feeling a lot of this too. If we’re careful and if we’re kind we’ll end 2019 as strong as we entered it.