The holidays are meant for us to celebrate and take time off to be with the ones we love. Sometimes, though, they can be the cause of additional stress and anxiety.
A mixture of family expectations, obligations, work that you did not finish, and children who need every bit of energy you have, can be a potential recipe for you to stay by the bar and food and engage in eating and drinking more than you usually would.
To kick off the holiday season, start by doing these 5 things every morning before 10 am to ensure you end the year off in alignment with yourself.
1. Drink 1 liter of water right when you wake up
Wake up and throw down 33 oz or 1 liter of water before you even brush your teeth. When we are busy and juggling a lot, we tend to forget to drink water. Hydration keeps our digestive system working well and our brains less foggy.
2. Cut down on your caffeine intake by half
Family and friends are stimulating on their own. Cutting down on caffeine will allow you to have deeper more restful sleep, not feel over stimulated throughout the day and reduce anxiousness.
If you drink 1 cup of coffee in the morning, cut down to 1/2. If you drink 2 cups, cut down to 1. If you can eliminate it all together, replace it with more water.
3. Check social media once thoroughly
If you engage with social media, check it once in the morning and go through and read what you need to read and do not check it again the rest of the day. Staying present in the moment and staying off social media will decrease stress and keep you connected to your own body, mind and your friends and family.
4. Hand write these 2 sentences on paper
Find a piece of paper if you do not keep a journal and physically hand write two sentences. In the first sentence describe how you honestly feel this morning - now how you want to feel or what you think you should feel, rather how you actually feel this very morning.
In the second sentence describe why you you accept your feeling. You cannot reject your feeling or try to change it, if your only choice is to allow and accept your feeling - whatever it may be - describe why you will do so.
If handwriting your feelings is not something you're accustomed to, it will feel awkward in the beginning. So a good example can be:
This morning I feel awkward and like I am wasting time engaging in a morning routine when I could be starting my day and getting more done and I am frustrated. I accept my own frustration because I am committed to taking care of myself through the end of this year and creating a shift so I allow myself to feel uneasy about it all.
5. Take it as it is
You're not alone in feeling stressed as the end of the year approaches. Most people start to reflect on how the year went while juggling family obligations and trying to remain focused on work. Acknowledge that parts can cause discomfort and take it as it is. It's often easier to accept the discomfort than it is to resist it. The discomfort always passes. The sooner you let go of trying to make it comfortable, the sooner the discomfort will pass.
It often helps to make a list of all the wonderful things you did accomplish both professionally and personally this year. To give yourself love and gratitude for coming as far as you have and knowing that you will naturally make more progress in the year to come by simply being a part of the cycle.