I hope you are all well and enjoying the beauty of the snow!!! I just wanted to send you some tips I received from my trainer Patricia Crane as they are very useful especially at this time.
In our already busy lives, the holidays are often a time of more stress rather than more joy and fun. Buying presents can stretch the family budget, demands on time increase, and family gatherings can be a challenge. This year simplify your life with these tips and enjoy the season more!
1. Begin with affirmations that this season is a fun and enjoyable time for you and your family. When you become aware of any negative thoughts about the holidays, tell yourself, 'stop!' Affirm that everything will get done easily.
2. Practice stress management! Remember to breathe deeply and easily, letting your shoulders, neck, and back relax and let go.
3. During the holidays the average person gains 5 pounds and then has to do a New Year's Resolution to lose them! Set an intention to maintain your weight. Plan lower calorie desserts- or don't even serve a dessert. Eat less the day before you are going to a party or big meal. Do simple things to move more, like dancing to your favorite songs or parking further away from the office so you walk more.
4. Simplify your gift giving by setting a theme. For example, make this a music year where you buy everyone a CD of their type of music. You can do all your shopping in one store! Or purchase gift certificates online. Now that's really easy!
5. Rather than buying gifts for friends, suggest that you spend time with each other instead. Go to a movie or share a meal. You'll save hours of trying to decide what they want, shopping, wrapping, etc.
6. One poll in an American study discovered that 83% of people (and I'm sure this is true of people in Ireland & other countries as well) wanted more time to spend with their families. Set a time to go to a fun holiday activity with your family and consider it as a present to each other.
7. Set a budget for not only gift giving but decorating and entertaining as well and stick with it. In January you'll be glad you did.
8. If family gatherings are something you look forward to, wonderful!! However, if they tend to be a challenge, prepare emotionally ahead of time. Visualize yourself staying calm. Remember Don't Take It Personally.
9. Contribute to a community agency that is helping others with food and presents during the holidays. Volunteer to help.
10. Plan ahead. Make a list of priorities and stay focused on them. Spend a few minutes at night deciding what's most important to get done the next day. Be reasonable in your expectations! Set boundaries for yourself. It's OK to say no to something you don't want to do. Respect your own need for time.
11. Remember that letting someone know you care is the greatest gift of all. This season, say I love you as much as possible to family and friends. Let people know why they are special to you. And also remember to love and appreciate yourself.