Feature by Vanessa De Lutiis
Ah, the holidays. A time of rest, of celebration, of immense stress. At a time where we are called to appreciate and reflect on the year, we are often overloaded with tasks to do, gifts to buy and people to please. So, we’ve gathered a few tips on how to experience your holidays mindfully, minimising stress and maximising gratitude throughout the season.
When the holiday season comes parading around, scoffing down delicious meals and overdosing on sweets becomes all too easy. But after all that irresistible overindulging, those luscious festive foods can start to taste rather bland.
When you eat without thinking or while trying to multitask, you miss out on so many rich flavours, textures and aromas. Reconnecting with your mind and body as you fuel it is the heart of mindfulness. Take it all in – with your stomach AND your mind.
Instead of cluttering the house with more toys and material gadgets this season, try to fill your figurative stockings it with memories, experiences and shared family values.
Steer away from the mundane bits and pieces that kids forget about after a day and try gifting them something a little different: a camping trip, a fireworks show, a family picnic. We guarantee they’ll remember the day for longer than the amount of time between this year and the next toy-gifting season.
The Line Meditation
From the grocery store, to the restaurant, to the pool of people swarming shopping centres, the holiday havoc means constant queues, long lines and inescapable traffic jams. Instead of letting this fuel your frustrations, take it as an opportunity to practise patience.
Start with some slow, deep breaths. Remember, it all starts with your breathing! Become aware of your emotions and remember that frustration only makes the wait longer. Take this time to recover from the day’s stress, or from the entire holiday season’s-worth of worries.
The 10-Fingers Gratitude Exercise
On the holiday to-do list of things to buy, people to visit and cakes to bake, practising gratitude is one small task that is often forgotten about.
This is a great trick for when the holidays go haywire and the festivities are making you frantic: be still for a moment and count on your fingers 10 things you are grateful for (no less than 10). This can be anything from a sunny day to a nutritious breakfast, or just a simple call from a good friend about anything at all. This might help you return to your to-do list with a different perspective.
Go For A Walk
Nothing says time-out like some fresh air. When things get chaotic, step out of all the happenings for 15-30 minutes; a bit of outside air can do wonders. There is no need to walk anywhere in particular, either. Just stroll around the block and observe your surroundings. It’s another good time to breathe and take some time for yourself too.
As the year ends, try to practise mindfulness during the holiday season and bring it with you into the New Year.
From all of us here at Casper & Casper, happy holidays!
Feature by Vanessa De Lutiis
Copyright © of Casper & Casper 19.12.2018