It’s a time of magic, wonder, and togetherness, but the holidays can also be incredibly stressful. Between entertaining loved ones and constant commitments, you may think your best hope is mere survival until January – but there’s a better way, and it doesn’t involve abandoning your responsibilities to immerse at a spa retreat. Meditation is a proven stress reliever that has been performed for thousands of years around the world. And if you believe you need a dedicated block of quiet time to take part in this time-honored practice, think again. Meditation can happen any place and for any duration of time, and the techniques are incredibly diverse. Take a look at just a few scenarios where a little meditation can pay off:
Holiday Travel: Whether you’re stressed about making a flight connection or have had enough of the kids in the car, holiday travel can drain the strongest of us. Here, try the simplest of meditations – focus on your inhale count, and then double your exhale. For example, if you breathe in for 3 seconds, exhale for 6. Having this simple exercise to focus on can take your mind off stressors that are largely out of your control, anyway.
Too Much Family Togetherness: You love your mom, your sister, or your father-in-law, but do they ever know how to push your buttons! It might be easier said than done, but instead of focusing on what’s annoying you about the person in question, try finding their beauty instead. If Great-Aunt Ethel is criticizing your (fill in the blank) yet again, take a step back, look hard, and find the beauty – whether it’s her compassion for animals or her great cooking abilities. Then, smile. This, too, shall pass.
Crowd Management. Worse than too much quality time with family is being up close and personal with hordes of strangers in a public space. From busy stores to holiday events, the sense of overwhelm can creep up suddenly and without warning. If this happens, come to your senses – quite literally. Get in touch with each of your five senses by identifying exactly what you are experiencing in the moment. Then, close your eyes, find peace in the chaos, and let it go.
Best wishes for a safe, happy, and healthy Thanksgiving weekend, from all of us at Actifirm!
Resources:Holiday Stress, meditation, thanksgiving