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10 Tips For Surviving The Holidays

The approaching holidays can be exciting, overwhelming and hard all at the same time.  Here are some tips to not only survive but thrive during the festivities.

1. Live “whole-heartedly” during the holidays

Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston coined the phase after conducting thousands of interviews studying happiness and connection.  “Whole-hearted living” means letting ourselves be deeply and vulnerably seen. Loving with our whole hearts, even when there’s no guarantee. Focus on what is really important.

2.  Accept yourself and find joy

Dr. Brown also teaches the Gift of Imperfection.  She explains that when we try to be perfect, we are not being vulnerable because we are not showing our authentic self.   Believing that you are enough!  Watch her video here.

3.  Make the holidays about connection

Tradition and rituals should be about connecting with loved ones, not out of obligation. Give meaningful gifts or spend time together instead of gifts.

4. Just say no

You cannot do everything so know your limits and set boundaries for yourself.

5. Throw guilt out the window

Don’t put unreasonable pressure on yourself, you don’t have to go to every party or social event. There is only so much time if you spend it doing things you feel like you have to do there will not be time for what you want to do.

6. Practice Mindfulness

Focus on the present moment. Thoroughly enjoy your food, company, activities, instead of being worried about past or future.  Being open and curious toward your feelings rather than judgments of them, is a powerful tool for experiencing happiness when practiced regularly. Ways to increase mindfulness: yoga, meditation, concentrating on senses, exploring thoughts and feelings.

7.  Ask for help or delegate

Most of us take on more than we can do during the holidays. This leads to extra stress and resentment.  Ask family and friends for help.  Avoid criticizing their efforts, remember relationships are more important than perfect brownie.

8. Relax, re-charge, and be good to yourself

Remember to pamper yourself: go for a walk, take a hot bath, get a massage, etc.  Listen to your body cues and take care of your physical needs.

9. Laugh

There is no such thing as the “ideal holiday.” Regardless of what Pinterest says. Having a good sense of humor enables you to find enjoyment in less than perfect situations.

10. Contribute to the larger community

Give service or donate not just during the holidays, but throughout the year.  Service improves gratitude and purpose which increases happiness.

My next blog will focus on managing relationships with difficult relatives or friends during the holidays. Stay tuned…


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