It’s that time of year again! The Christmas lights have been officially switched on, the shops are full of all things festive and we suddenly feel that time and our ‘to-do’ lists are definitely against us. Arrgghh!!
I have to admit that I love Christmas. It is quite possibly my favourite time of year and I’m usually at my most excited. BUT, it can add so much extra stress and huge expectations. We think everything has to be perfect, we get run-down in trying to create this and then end up unwell.
Magazine pictures of the most stylishly decorated homes with their beautiful festive themes and press articles instructing us on how to have the perfect Christmas don’t help either. It’s just not reality. Think ‘connection (with ourselves, our loved ones and those around us) not perfection’ at this time of year.
- It is okay to be selfish and have a day just for you. Yes, Christmas is a time for giving, but that also includes giving to yourself. Both in the frantic run-up and over the festive season itself. (I recently read a great term for describing that lull between Christmas and New Year. Twixmas. The calm after the storm in those quieter days.) It’s always when you don’t feel like you can take any time out that you actually need it the most. So do it.
Take a day at home. Don’t bother getting dressed, you just know you’ll have some Christmas pyjamas to wear, and you will have probably bought enough food to live off the leftovers for a week. Turn off your phones and laptops (unless they are Christmas presents that you can’t wait to play with!), curl up with a book, a great film or just lie in a darkened room and recover! Christmas doesn’t have to be the non-stop party filled with constant socialising (unless you really want it to be) as most of us find that exhausting! It’s okay to not conform to other’s expectations.
Your physical and emotional health will thank you for it!
If all else fails, watch It’s A Wonderful Life and enjoy what I consider to be the best ending to any film. Ever.
If you want to forget about the ‘faff’ that comes with this time of year, this will do it in the most simple and life-affirming way.
- Give Your Immune System a Boost. I usually make sure I’m well stocked with eucalyptus essential oil, both for before and during the festive period. If I’m with anyone who is full of cold or I feel that I’m at risk of coming down with something, I pop a few drops in a diffuser, maybe mixed with a drop of Orange to add a more festive aroma and Lavender, which increases the effects of other oils it’s blended with, and let those oils do their work!
- two or three 1″ chunks of ginger
- two or three cloves of garlic, cut in half
- two cinnamon sticks
- two tablespoons of Muscavodo sugar
- 4 cups of water
Bring to the boil and simmer for a couple of minutes. Strain and serve.
I usually decant this into a container and then simply pop a cup in the microwave every time you want a glass. It also tastes much nicer than it sounds! A cup of this several times a day if you do have a cold and are full of catarrh really does help you feel better.
- Keep Well-Hydrated. We tend to get so busy that we forget to drink enough and that can lead to low energy, headaches and digestive issues – not helpful when you’re already feeling tired!
So keep hydrated with water, herbal teas or hot water with fresh ginger and lemon will help support your liver, maintain your energy levels, help to balance your blood sugar levels, reduce headaches and keep your skin clear. Or try adding berries and cucumber to a jug of water and sip throughout the day.
- Focus On Your Health. Keeping yourself emotionally and physically healthy during the festive period is really important. Our expectations need to be managed, ensuring we are not overwhelmed by what modern society expects of us. Most families have their own traditions and habits and these need to be respected. Don’t feel that you need to keep up with the Jones’. Sometimes the simple things work better than the more complicated.
Sometimes it’s the small things that can turn a stressful build-up to the big day into a happier one!
We hope, after implementing as many ‘survival tips’ as helps you, you have your calmest and happiest run-up Christmas without the overwhelm!