Healthy and happy for the holidays
This is the time of year to let go and have fun, though I think everyday should be like that. In order to really enjoy this time of year we need to feel our best. So, while we may overindulge in sugar, alcohol, less sleep etc. It is important to take care of ourselves so we feel our best!
Here are a few tips I have for the holiday season to keep you feeling your best.
One of the many translations of yoga is to “yoke” or unite all parts of us, which means we need to look as our physical, mental and spiritual well being.
On the physical plane it is important to look at nutrition and movement. Here are a few helpful tips:
1. Start the day (I mean before coffee or anything else, but after meditation) with lemon water and apple cider vinegar (if you can handle it), this gets the whole system moving
2. Try to consume lots of vegetables at lunch so that if you indulge at a holiday party or are in a rush for dinner you know you’ve had some nutrients.
4. If you know you have a low immune system, check back to my last post about immune health.
5. If you need more energy don’t grab a coffee or sugary snack, grab a green tea or some water. A quick yoga nidra also helps you recharge (click here to for a link to my favorite teachers recording).
6. Get your body moving daily! There may be an extra treat or two so instead of waiting till January to start moving or getting back at it, commit to yourself to moving daily so that you don’t feel an extra pound or two or maybe extra stiff and lethargic this holiday season.
7. Sleep! Probably should be number one. Get 8 hours (WHAT, yes I said 8) if you do it regularly the 5-hour nights aren’t so gross.
Planning for the physical outcomes of celebrating
1. If you have overindulged- consider these remedies. Water and vitamin C before bed, Kombucha (click here for my favorite) in the morning after lemon water (NO COFFEE), and try Past Tense by Doterra for any headaches
2. Plan your week! From grocery shopping to make sure your ingredients are in the fridge to planning our your healthy snacks in case you are rushing through a mall, planning to buy or pre-making meals for busy days to will ensure a healthy meal is available to you when you need it.
On the mental plane it is important to remember sometimes the holidays can be stressful. They can trigger us and all of the external focus can leave us feeling ungrounded and even perhaps questioning ourselves or create feelings of jealousy and shame. One of the things I am teaching in my classes this week is the idea of reactivity and applying the two-dart theory. The first dart is something that hurts and we feel but the second dart is the stories we attach to the first dart. These secondary darts we inflict on ourselves. When we learn to pause and “mind the gaps” we are less reactive and we feel the first dart and hopefully practice over time not reacting in a way we would later regret.
It’s also hard at this time of year to stay on “your side of the street”, as I like to say. It’s hard to stay grounded in your own practice, purpose and goals. One of the lessons two of my mentors keep reminding me is to go back to your why? Why do you believe in the things you do, why do you value the things you do?
On the spiritual plane it is important to slow down, breathe and meditate daily just to help you slow down and re-focus. I love these two apps (calm & headspace) , they both have free options and are great for kids too! It is also important to remember we are all connected. At this time of year it’s important to connect with others and serve our communities. Every year my family and I celebrate Hanukah as 8 nights to give back, we make cookies for the police, and we donate toys, mittens and more. There are so many ways to serve. Even coming to your mat and breathing and connecting is a way to serve because it grounds us to be calm in our daily lives.
For my yoga students don’t forget another way to serve is on your mat December 18-22 for Food Share. So as we celebrate this season also reflect on ways you can be of service to those around you and in your community.