The calendar tells us it’s Peppermint Mocha time which means it’s also holiday season! Cue shopping, gifts, parties, planes, trains and automobiles. What is coined as the most joyous time of the year is often the most stressful and perhaps dreaded time of the year! Why? I believe it’s because we are living a fast-paced life when we really need to be living slowly.
How about beginning a new tradition this year by having a slow holiday? Here are five ideas for you. Pick one or implement all of them!
#1) Travel only one of the holidays
Since Thanksgiving (in the US) and Christmas are only about a month apart, pick one of the holidays to travel. By choosing this option you will cut down on stress of airport travel as well as being kind to your budget as well! You could also take turns by traveling to a different family member every year. For the holiday that you stay home, begin to implement your own traditions.
#2) Buy gifts for people you truly care about
By the time you travel, attend countless parties, bake cookies and throw in buying gifts for people you don’t really know, you will end up with a case of being a holiday grinch! This is not mindful living. Be selective with who you buy gifts for. Set boundaries on your gift list. You could also suggest starting a pick-a-name gift exchange or maybe having everyone go in on a large gift for a charity. Remember, you don’t have to buy everyone a gift. However, you can write a handwritten thank you note to those who did get you a gift!
#3) Attend 25% of the holiday parties you are invited to
Are you invited to countless holiday parties? Write them all down and decide which one(s) you really desire to attend. Avoid attending parties out of obligation. Staying out late and partaking of unhealthy food and drink doesn’t lead to a healthy and slow living holiday season. Aim for only attending parties that lift you up, not tear you down.
#4) Only spend cash on gifts (avoid using credit cards)
Maybe worse than buying gifts for people you don’t like is buying gifts that you don’t have money for! Credit card bills will arrive and you’ll regret buying those gifts! There are a few ways to go about holiday gift giving. You can limit the number of people you buy gifts for. You could only give gifts that you make (art, body care, baked goods, babysitting are a few ideas). Or you can save money all year long and only buy gifts with cash. When January rolls around you will be so happy you lived slowly during the holiday season!
#5) Mindful activity
Part of slow holiday living is continuing to take care of your wellbeing during this most wonderful time of year. When your healthy living habits go by the wayside, this is a sure sign that you aren’t living slowly and mindfully! Keeping up your self-care habits during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season is a great way to be the peace and calmness during a traditionally busy time of year. Continue to be physically active daily. Eat and drink nourishing food. Start or end the day with meditation. Get quality sleep.
If you are feeling panicky about this upcoming holiday season, I hope you will take time to recenter yourself and implement at least one of the above ideas into your life. How will you live slowly this holiday season? Share with me on Instagram or leave a comment below!