5. Be good to yourself - The holiday season is all about giving of yourself yet the shopping, wrapping, cooking, volunteering, and partying can leave you exhausted and empty. You can’t give what you don’t have, so refill the well regularly with self-care. Exercise, put your feet up with your favorite cup of tea and a good book or movie, treat yourself to a massage, and nourish your cells with good food. It may seem impossible to eat healthy this time of year, but if you think of the holiday season as approximately 40 days with roughly 120 meals, there’s plenty of opportunity to make good choices. Not only will you make it through the holidays healthier, you’ll enjoy them much more!
6. Forgive someone - Nothing can weigh us down and impact our cardiovascular health like the negativity associated with anger, bitterness, and resentment towards someone who has hurt or betrayed us in some way. You may have heard the expression by Buddha that "Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; [except] you are the one who gets burned.” Negative feelings create bad biochemistry in the body that can get stored as toxicity and contribute to disease. And think about all the space and energy those bad feelings are taking up in your life. If this sounds familiar to you, think about the benefits you will receive by forgiving someone. That’s not to say that forgiveness is instantaneous; however, you can begin the process with an intention or a decision, and then work through it, for example, by journaling or writing a letter to the person and then burning it. Over time, you’re heart will feel much lighter.
7. Indulge - In your feelings, that is. The holidays have a way of bringing those deep, uncomfortable feelings bubbling up to the surface. Sadness, regret, longing–whatever it may be; like the anger or bitterness around forgiveness, they take up room and require lots of energy to suppress. And if the physical consequences from ignoring your emotions aren’t bad enough, if you choose to stuff them back down with excess eggnog or pumpkin pie, you only multiply the negative impact they have on your body, mind, and spirit. As Oscar Wilde said, “Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.” You’re here to experience life through your senses, so rather than ignore or resist your feelings, instead, invite them up and let them flow. Identify how they show up in your body and let them fully live out their lifespan. When you can accept and appreciate your emotions, they’ll become a source of healing rather than harm.
When you begin to accept and regularly practice the art of non-caloric nourishment to feed those parts of you that can never be satisfied with food, you’ll be taking care of your heart on physical, emotional and spiritual levels and this is far more powerful than any deprivation diet ever will be. If you’re looking for support around this area, I’d love to help you make it a reality. It can begin with a conversation. Many blessings for a happy and healthy holiday season…