Yes, it’s that time of year again and we’re right in the middle of preparing for the holidays with shopping, errands, travel arrangements, and general running around to get it all done. Remembering to take time to care for ourselves can sometimes take a back seat to all the things that we feel we need to do.
I’ve compiled 4 of my favorite strategies to help.
1. Low Maintenance Comfort Food for cold days:
Use your slow cooker to take the stress out of meal prep and have a nice warm soup or stew waiting for you at the end of a long day. Soups and stews are warm and comforting, and not just for those times that you are recovering from a cold.
I have compiled a list of healthy options below:
(Slow cooker lamb stew image via bulletproof.com)
Not a meat eater? Here are a few vegetarian options:
2. Take Deep "Heart-Centered" Breaths.
(picture via heartmath.org)
I know you’ve heard this before, but it really helps and is something I have to constantly remind myself to do as well. When we’re in “fight or flight” mode we can have a tendency toward shallow breathing which can make matters worse. One of my favorite techniques is called “Heart-Focused Breathing”. Yes, it may sound a little strange but is actually a scientifically proven technique that really helps get the body out of reactive stress and into a more coherent state.
As described by the HeartMath Institute: “Heart-focused breathing is about directing your attention to the heart area and breathing a little more deeply than normal. As you breathe in, imagine you are doing so through your heart, and, as you breathe out, imagine it is through your heart. (In the beginning, placing your hand over your heart as you breathe can help you in directing your focus to your heart.)”
3. Make Stress Your Friend
(Picture of Kelly McGonigal via TED)
Consider that perhaps stress really isn’t the big villain it’s been made out to be. A certain amount of stress is necessary and a normal part of life. I’d like to invite you to consider a different perspective and try to use or channel that stress to help you rise to any challenge that might be giving you grief.
One of my favorite TED talks covers this very topic quite nicely:
4. Get adjusted.
(You knew I was going to say that, right? 😉)
Making sure your body is aligned can take stress off your joints and nervous system and help you feel more relaxed and better able to deal. I know schedules get hectic this time of the year but make sure you’re taking time out for yourself and stick to your care plan or schedule a “whole body tune up” with the office if you haven’t been in for a while to help you be calm, focused and pain free.
Schedule online below:
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me at [email protected]
Happy Holidays and Best of Health!