Sparkle, Shimmer, Glimmer, Glow

Create your own Holiday Traditions that let the Season Sparkle and Glow.

The holidays can be stressful, and many of us get derailed and resign ourselves to just “letting it all go,” eating whatever we want, spending money we don’t have, and burning the candle on both ends. We promise ourselves that we will “get back on track in the new year.” Except when the new year inevitably rolls around, we’re exhausted, five pounds heavier, and stressed out because of the credit card statement. I know- I’ve done it!

These are 5 Daily Habits, that are not only rooted in Ayurveda and Yoga, are pretty common sense, I’m just lovingly reminding you. 😉

I promise if you try to do things a little differently this holiday season, you will show up on January 1, 2024, feeling way better than if you just did things the same old way.

You have the power to CREATE YOUR HOLIDAY TRADITIONS and start your new year feeling AWESOME– give it a whirl. 

5 Steps to “Glow From the Inside Out” this holiday season.

1. Get rest – prioritize sleep. You will inevitably make poor health choices if you’re tired, burnt out, and feeling low energy. You’ll drink more caffeine and alcohol, eat more sugar, and feel less motivated to achieve your goals. Those goals could be showing up as a hospitable host, a pleasant guest, an attentive parent, and a loving spouse. Those goals could also be maintaining weight, sticking to your workouts, and having the energy to enjoy the holiday season. This time of year, our immune systems are often compromised with airplane travel, the latest “bug”, and erratic schedules. Shoot for seven or more hours of sleep a night, if possible. Sleep is THE best medicine and way to stay healthy, grounded and energized. Consider it the BEST GIFT you can give yourself this winter and always. 

2. Indulge wisely – this is a season of access. The holidays are a prime time for overeating and over-consuming. Before you put it in your mouth, ask yourself if you really “want and need it.” Are you eating more because it’s the holidays and you think you should, or do you deserve to eat that rum ball? Would half of it suffice? Pay attention to what’s going in your mouth and ask yourself if you could make a better choice. I get it; it’s fun to enjoy some of the seasonal treats. However, if you can get clear on how you want to feel on January 1st and how you wish to start the new year, you might pass on that second helping of stuffing or extra creamy, booze-loaded eggnog. Give yourself a goal to shoot for. How do you want to start a new decade? Set yourself up for success NOW, and you’ll feel more inspired, motivated, and empowered to keep the momentum going into the new year.

3. Make holiday dinners earlier  – Eat the most significant meal at lunchtime. Make supper more of a supplemental meal and eat earlier (4-5 pm) when possible. Maybe the new tradition is to eat a bigger holiday lunch and let evenings be geared more towards bonding with family around other activities rather than eating. A few ideas we love to do are going for an evening walk, playing board games, playing in the snow, telling stories, etc. You’ll get tired naturally, sleep better, wake up with more energy, and feel light and vibrant, not heavy and dull

4. Move your body   I remember visiting grandparents and extended family in cold Saskatchewan, Canada, over the holidays as a child. The tradition was to sit around the kitchen table while my grandmother and aunts cooked, baked, and cooked some more. Our German culture and traditions included sweets, perogies, cabbage rolls, bread, and lots of meats. I also remember the stories that were told sitting around those tables and the laughs and good times. That said, there was a lot of sitting, eating, and drinking going on. I can’t say they were the healthiest crew, unfortunately.

Our bodies are meant to move. When we don’t move regularly, they begin to break down on various levels. If you’re traveling, try to get up and walk around the plane, stop the car, stretch, or do some jumping jacks. 

Take time daily (even hourly) to move your body. The best time of the day to get conscious movement is as soon as you wake up (regardless of what exercise you have planned later in the day). This helps you get out of your sleepy head and into your body. That means taking a walk/run, getting on your yoga mat for 20 minutes, or anything else that gets your heart pumping, your blood circulating, and your breath moving. 

If you are planted in one spot for too long, whether that’s in front of the TV. watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” for the twentieth time, or in a conversation with a long-lost aunt- make an effort to get up and shake it out in any way that feels good. 

5. Slow down and tune into the present moment – the holidays always seem to whiz by. There’s so much anticipation and excitement around all the activities and special events, especially if you have kids. Notice your tendencies to overwhelm yourself with doing too much, committing to too many things, and spending too much money on things you know are only fulfilling a temporary desire. 

How do you want to feel on January 1st? Exhausted, burnt out, and in debt, or rested, rejuvenated, and at ease? Take time to prioritize what really matters to you. Where do you really want to spend your time? Who do you really want to connect with? Where do you really want to spend your money? Then do that! 

We put most of the pressures we feel during the holidays (like 98%) on ourselves. Slow down, and take that extra time to be fully present with what truly matters to YOU. When you do this, you show up for others in a better frame of mind and a healthier, happier spirit. 

Thich Nhat Hanh: “Smilebreathe and go slowly.”