The holidays are just around the corner. While it’s an exciting time of year meant for celebrations, family, and friends, it can also be very stressful.
For some people, the holidays are overwhelming. You might have to deal with a busy schedule, buying gifts, making food, and even seeing people you don’t necessarily get along with.
Sound familiar? Maybe just reading that started to stress you out a little. Take a deep breath, because you don’t have to let stress overwhelm you this holiday season. If you’re already feeling the pressure, consider practicing mindfulness.
Mindfulness is more than just a trend or a popular buzzword. It’s an extremely effective, healthy practice that can pull your focus where it needs to be while allowing you to feel more relaxed.
Let’s cover a few ways in which practicing mindfulness during the holidays can help you de-stress.
Staying in the Present
One of the best things about mindfulness is that it allows you to fight back against the “what ifs” of the future and the mistakes or bad experiences of the past. If you find that you’re constantly worried about what’s going to happen over the holiday season, mindfulness can help.
Instead of focusing on how the next office party is going to be overwhelming or the fact that you still have to buy a dozen gifts, let mindfulness keep you in the moment. If you spend so much time worrying about the past or future, you’re not going to be able to enjoy the season at all. By staying in the present, you’ll have more opportunities to find peace in little moments without getting overwhelmed by the “what ifs” ahead of you.
Shifting Your Perspective
Mindfulness can also help to change your overall perspective or mood surrounding the holidays. Some people get stressed about the season weeks before it officially begins. That can serve as a sort of vicious cycle. The more stressed you are, to begin with, the easier it will be for even the smallest inconvenience to add more stress.
By practicing mindfulness regularly, you can change your perspective about the season. You can let the practice, itself, improve your overall stress levels. It will better prepare you for whatever the holidays bring — good and bad.
A Sense of Self-Care
Self-care can often be something people overlook during the holiday season. You might think you’re too busy, or you might even wonder if it’s selfish to focus on yourself during the season of giving.
But, self-care is far from selfish. It’s a necessity that will get you through this time of year with less anxiety and stress.
Self-care doesn’t have to be elaborate or take a lot of time. Things like getting enough sleep, eating healthy meals, and staying physically active are all great things to incorporate into your daily routine. Mindfulness is another wonderful practice that is considered a form of helpful self-care.
By practicing mindfulness each day, you’re likely to feel more relaxed, overall. It can start your day on the right foot, and help you get through stressful situations that you might not be looking forward to. When your stress levels are lowered, things that might normally get to you probably won’t seem as extreme.
So, take the time to practice mindfulness every day throughout the holiday season. Close your eyes, focus on your breathing, and stay in the present moment. Don’t let the thoughts that are threatening to overwhelm you take over. Let them pass by as you let go of the stress of the season.
Keep in mind that mindfulness does take some practice. Don’t be discouraged if you feel like you aren’t “getting it” right away. Focus on your breathing and staying in the present, and it will soon become second nature.