Nothing compares to the high spirits and colorful atmosphere from November to December. From Thanksgiving to Chanukah, to Christmas and New Years Eve, the holidays are a time for family, fun, and frenzy. But cozying up with that egg nog and proceeding with one more caramel delight can trigger weight gain, and the stress of it all can, too.
How do we stay physically healthy when seasonal treats are only here for a limited amount of time? How do we maintain our mental clarity if we have particular in laws, conversations motivated by politics, or quarterly work deadlines approaching?
The good news is that there are several ways you can uphold your health, whether it be mental or physical. Here are 10 ways to keep yourself motivated by positivity and energized, despite any tension, cabin fever, or a multi-flavor popcorn tin calling your name.
1. Meal Prep
This one is a given. Meal prepping not only saves time and money, but it will help you maintain proper nutrition and food intake.
2. Limit Alcohol
Despite all of the gatherings that call for a celebration, try to keep the drinking to a minimum. Let’s be honest, hangovers are never fun. Alcohol also lowers our immunity, making it harder for our body to fight off colds.
3. Get Proper Sleep
A lack of sleep heightens stress levels, increasing the likelihood for us to get upset over something that normally wouldn’t trigger such a reaction. Staying well rested is key to stress management and ensuring full consciousness and presence at all times, physically and mentally.
4. Practice Self - Control
Your body is your temple and your safe place. Just because your Aunt Wanda made you four loaves of banana bread to take home and insists you do so doesn’t mean that you have to eat it all. Remember, gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins, so maintain your rationality when it comes to consuming all. the. foods. around you, even if they are seasonal.
5. Recite Gratitude
Take a moment and think about all of the people who love you. Try to take time each day to give thanks for the relationships you have and the joy that is shared among them. Let these people know. Recite your gratitude for your health, job, or any other blessing you feel.
6. Support Immunity
Depending on your environment, the weather is most likely shifting and this is the time of the year Ms. Influenza comes knocking on everyone’s door. Don’t let her overpower you. When you feel the slightest bit of sickly, try Emergen-C or the old ‘sweat it out’ trick. Take your supplements, maintain your nutrition, and keep yourself happy and healthy.
7. Make To-Do Lists
Making to-do lists may be a cliché, but it is sound advice. It is so easy to forget what you’re supposed to accomplish, and these help keep your priorities in tact.
8. Stay Active
Sure, it may be cooler outside, but exercise is good for your body and for the soul. Try to exercise at least 30 minutes a day, whether that is using a Body Sport Ab Wheel or layering up and enjoying a walk through of the neighborhood decor.
9. Treat Yourself
This may seem a tad bit contradictory to the statements above, but this is referring to honoring thyself. You are you, and the only single you in the world. While you’re out reflecting on all the gratitude that consumes you, give yourself some credit. Take some time to bake your favorite meal, watch your favorite movie, re-read your favorite book, or visit your favorite coffee shop. Treating yourself is practicing self-love and nourishment, allowing you to pause and take time to appreciate your growth and individuality, so you can reciprocate with others.
Take time and just breathe. Seriously, whether you breathe through meditation, yoga, or simply at standstill - make sure you take time to do it. Deeply inhale and exhale, and place one hand on your chest with the other on your stomach and feel your body flow. This is calming and will remind you that every little thing is going to be alright.
By honoring these 10 commandments, you will remain happy and healthy this holiday season, and even in every day life. Always take care of yourself, reflect, and rejoice!