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Tips for End of the Year Bliss

Updated: Dec 5, 2022

"Everyone expects a Ho-Ho-Ho but it's ok say No-No-No!"

Ready or not, here it comes!


It's hard to believe the holidays are upon us and 2022 is coming to a close. This time of year can bring on feelings of heightened emotion. Pictures of excessive joy from social media, interactions with family, holiday parties and financial burden can create holiday fatigue. However, it can also bring us opportunities for making cherished memories with our loved ones, reminding us what is really important and feeling truly grateful for all of the abundance in our life.


Here are my top tips for staying organized, grounded and feeling your best mentally and physically as we round out another year!


Make a list. Nothing makes me feel organized like a good list. I usually have a column for what I need to buy, what I have purchased already and a list of misc gift ideas just in case I need something last minute. I find it creates a more mindful gift giving experience and less haphazard. Also, physically checking things off is very satisfying!


Create a budget. Have the budget discussion about what works best for your family before holiday spending begins. Be realistic about your spending comfort zone. This alleviates a ton of stress in the long run. It may also create opportunities to be more creative around your gift giving! Lastly, don't be tempted by all the big sales. Sales are great if it's planned spending and in the budget. Remember, it's 100% off if you don't buy it!


Stay true to your morning & evening routine. Keeping your routine can be challenging during this time when the kids are out of school or you have extra days off work. A break in the norm is good, however, it may take extra dedication to stay on top of your routine and healthy habits. Even something as simple as waking up and going to bed at the same time each day is a great place to start to stay in rhythm with your goals. This will go a long way toward keeping you feeling grounded emotionally and physically.


Indulge intentionally. We will undoubtedly be presented with many well-intentioned sugary treats and cocktails at holiday social gatherings. This is part of a life well lived and perfectly fine to partake and indulge as you wish. However, the best way to do this is to do so intentionally with enjoyment and a plan! Food is meant to nourish our body, but also is the cornerstone for many meaningful family traditions that bring us together. The first step is to savor the food and the experience! The next is to be aware that it can also bring us digestion upset, bloat and a hangover. So be mindful and prepared. If you know you will be eating a heavier meal, take 2-3 digestive enzymes about half an hour before you eat. Also, prepare your body by making sure you are adequately hydrated. Sip electrolytes before and after if you decide to indulge in a few drinks.


Elevate your cooking. This is fun to do anytime time of year, but especially during the holidays when you most likely have more to prepare. Cooking in chaos is no fun, so consider setting an intentional scene! Light a candle or two, dim overhead lights, add music (classical, jazz, Paris café or curate your own cooking playlist!), put on your apron of course in case of spills and sip on your drink of choice while you enjoy preparing your meal.


Keep expectations realistic. Be realistic about expectations surrounding gatherings and extra family time. Sometimes they can feel forced on us especially when they include people we don't necessary connect with. Or we may have hope for a connection that may or may not happen. Practice taking the experience or interaction for what it is instead of creating scenarios in your mind. When my mind begins to spiral, I ask myself, "what is true right now?" More often than not I will realize that I am creating more stress about a situation than necessary by piling up expectations. And remember, you cannot control others, but you can control how YOU react.


It's ok to say NO. Say no thank you if that feels better! Let go of the need to say yes to every invite. Most of these pressures around events are self imposed and you most certainly have the right to decline an invitation.


Contribute. I heard this quote recently on a podcast and jotted it down because it inspired me. It was "look to contribute more than you capture." I've been thinking about this as the holiday pressure starts to build and it has given me more of a sense of peace. It creates a shift by taking the emphasis off of myself and onto others. Several times throughout day I ask myself "how can I help?" Try it! it feels really good!


Curiosity and Presence. When you do say yes to a social gathering, try this tip to increase connection and make the most of the experience. It's called active listening. Get curious about what's going on in another person's life, make eye contact, listen and ask questions. It really does feel good to be heard! You'll be amazed----the more you listen, the more you will be thought of as a great conversationalist even if the other person does most of the talking! Also, be prepared with a few conversation starters in case you are face to face with someone you don't know very well and need an ice breaker. Some examples could be : "How do you know the host? Tell me about you. Have you been to this event before? Are you having a good time?" Also, to be truly present, limit looking at your phone during conversations. Save that for later!


Body scan. Part of maintaining balance and bliss during the holidays is managing your energy levels. Creating awareness in real time about how your body is handling the extra stressors is crucial to this balance. You can do this by a quick and frequent "check in" with yourself. Sit calmly and comfortably. With eyes closed and hands on lap, begin to slow your breathing. Become aware of each inhale and exhale. Then start a body scan beginning at the top of your head. Bring your attention to each part of your body as you move down, breathing into the area and noticing if an emotion comes up or physical tension. If you find a spot, visualize the stress melting away as you breathe into that area.


Single-tasking a.k.a. Present Moment Practice. We have been programmed to believe multi-tasking is a good thing, but studies are beginning to show not so much. Our brains thrive on one thing at a time. This allows us presence in the moment and our full capacity to do something really well instead of many things mediocre! One way to do this is to proactively carve out the time you need for each activity. When you have the time and space available to you, you can give your whole self to the task at hand. It makes such a difference in the outcome and how you feel while you are engaged. Give it a try and see if your mood and energy shift into a more calm and content space with increased clarity and productivity.


As this year comes to a close, remember that you already have everything you need to find your bliss! Practices that promote presence, gratitude and connection will help you find it.


Happy Holidays!



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