So … we’re in Cold Season.
I’m actually writing this blog post sick in bed. My husband & my youngest are also snuggled & sick together upstairs. Oy vey! We’re a mess. (Yet another reason for extra self-care this season!!)
We are in the darkest days of the year, and this is the season for Rest. These days right now are for sleeping, and snuggling. For going slow. Drinking hot tea. (NOT holiday madness!)
Rest is really important soul work right now.
This season’s rest is vital for restoring our energy after the outward-focused months of summer and facing our shadows in the fall. We need winter’s rest to prepare our spirits for the growing months ahead.
It’s a cruel irony that right now, when our spirits need rest, we’re also entering the craziness of the modern holiday season.
Before the holiday madness really gets cranking, I wanted to share my top tips for staying calm, peaceful, present & relaxed over the next few weeks.
1. Slow down & breathe.
It’s easy to get sucked into the frenetic energy of the holiday season. Try, literally, slowing down. Walk slow. Drive slow.
When you feel yourself getting sucked into the heightened energy, when your heart rate elevates–pause. Take several deep breaths. (Exaggerated, deep belly breaths.) You can do this in traffic, in a shopping mall–anytime you feel that frantic Christmas energy creep in.
2. Don’t over-schedule yourself & don’t be afraid to say no.
I am super protective of my energy at this time of year & I’m trying to be more transparent about that. I recently responded to an invitation by saying, “That has to be a game day decision for me. I have to be super protective of my energy this time of year & I’m just not sure how I’ll feel.”
And, you know what … everybody gets it. And usually they feel more empowered to protect their own energy in the same way.
3. Do less. And do it far less than perfectly.
We, especially parents, often feel like everything has to be Perfect. I usually envision these perfect scenarios of all these perfect holiday things I want to do for my kids–traditions, crafts, activities. And then I kill myself trying to achieve perfection. And you wanna know what … my kids don’t even notice the difference between perfect & mediocre. And usually spontaneous & mediocre ends up being way more fun.
5 Savor the small things.
Pause & really notice all the beautiful, magical things about the holidays.
Notice the twinkling lights. Pause when you hear your favorite Christmas song. Pause to watch the joy in your kids’ faces.
As often as possible–pause, and truly take in the things you love about the holidays. Step outside of the whirlwind so you can soak in the magic of this time of year.
Take extra gentle care of yourselves, dear friends ❤ May you be gloriously mediocre and totally in the moment over the next few weeks.
Thank you so much for these empowering and uplifting suggestions — and for your whole down-to-earth approach to imparting your wisdom (e.g. Winter Solstice Ritual — that it’s more important to be present than to have the super-right crystals, oils, etc.)
Thank you for simplifying my night… it’s just gone midnight here in Austria.
Best wishes for the holidays and for the forthcoming season.
Aww, thank you for this, Fran. I really appreciate your note. I definitely try to approach all the seasonal holidays with this very down-to-earth vibe. As soon as things get too fussy, we tend to avoid making the effort. The simpler the better, I tend to think. Thank you so much for reading. Sending you so much love, erin xo