The Thanksgiving holiday marks the beginning of the holiday season, and while this time of year is bright with cheer, full of warmth and love, gratitude and gift-giving, it is also wrought with stressors. That’s why we advise you to nourish your mind, body and spirit this Thanksgiving with these tips:
- Slow down. Whether you’re rushing to the supermarket or rushing around the house, take a breath. Give yourself an internal moment of silence. Acknowledge that rushing everywhere makes for grouchier interactions with people, higher stress levels and a generally unhappy attitude. Connecting with your breath, even for a moment, allows you to come back to the present moment.
- Set healthy boundaries. If you don’t have the time or you don’t have the energy, say “no.” Don’t let others take advantage of you, but most importantly, don’t take advantage of yourself. You are allowed to create a holiday that feels good for you, too.
- Create a budget. Spending frivolously or overspending is stressful. Take 10 minutes to plan a budget around your holiday and nix anything that doesn’t fit into your budget. Being intentional in this will create a feeling of peace within you.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. We can’t plan everything and inevitably, something may not go as planned. It’s expected and it happens to everyone. Trust that you are okay if your dish doesn’t turn out or you forgot to pick up an ingredient at the store. Smile your way through it and give your nervous system a break!
- Move your body. Whether it’s first thing in the morning before the day gets going, or at the end of the day after all is said and done, it doesn’t matter. Just make an opportunity to move. Exercise does more than burn calories, it moves stagnant energy and pent up emotions, too.
- Serve whole foods. Processed foods are not only unhealthy, but they are harder for your body to digest. Part of the fun on Thanksgiving is the act of cooking, creating nourishing foods from scratch. Give yourself and your family this gift by avoiding pre-packaged foods.
- Drink water. It’s too easy to get dehydrated during the holidays. Keep your water nearby and make a point to drink throughout the day.
- Get a good night’s sleep. When you are rested, you are naturally better prepared to deal with whatever curve ball comes your way. Your attitude is naturally brighter, you aren’t as prone to getting sick, and your stress level goes way down.
- Connect with others. There is no denying it – when we feel connectedness with others, we feel good. When we’re rushing around the house and making other preparations for the holidays, we may not even think to sit down with other guests to share a moment of conversation. Make a point to take a break for visiting.
- Be open-hearted. Open-heartedness takes courage and vulnerability. This isn’t so easy when it comes to spending time with family or friends that have hurt us. The truth is, it’s likely we have all hurt one another in some way at some time. If you are ready, take this opportunity to bury the hatchet, even if it’s just an internal acknowledgement of doing so. And even if you’re not ready to fully let go, try it for a day. See what happens when you bring grace and open-heartedness to yourself and your process and to others.
- Take a moment for a spiritual practice. Pray, meditate, journal. Whatever makes sense for you, take a moment to do. You’ll feel calmer, happier and grateful you did.
- Practice gratitude. Remember to say “Thank you.” Thank every being that contributed to a happy and healthy holiday. Your family, the farmer’s who worked hard so you could have a beautiful meal and the person helped you locate the one ingredient you couldn’t find at the grocery store. Be intentional about your gratitude and share it with everyone.
Happy Thanksgiving, friends!