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Zen for the Holidays: Ways to Melt Away Holiday Stress

Running from store to store to get all the ingredients and the perfect gift can be a lot. Dashing from house to house and restaurant to restaurant for Christmas parties can be exhausting. We do all of this while balancing work, caring for loved ones, and putting up decorations. It can feel like a big blur sometimes and it can drain us quickly. Here is your guide to navigating the holiday season. First, we will cover why this time of year feels insane. Then we will give you some healthy coping mechanisms. From singing to cleaning, we have you covered. The calmer and more centered you are, the better you can shine like the lights on your tree.

Now let's untangle why we get as tangled as our holiday lights this time of year. We put so much pressure on ourselves to make everything perfect. Just like we learn in yoga, everything does not need to be perfect, we can apply that concept to our holiday experience. It is less about presents and more about being present.

From the kids being hyped up on sugar and annoyed with their scratchy clothes and crying to your nosy relative nagging you about your life, family gatherings can be a lot. Yoga is a wonderful way to handle this. Practicing before you head over to your family’s house and after you get home can help you manage your emotions. If you are visiting relatives and staying in their home, hopefully, you have a guest room you are staying in so you can practice yoga.

Stress can do some serious damage to your health and immune system. Finding a healthy way to manage that stress can help. Mindful breathing and yoga help regulate your nervous system. Singing activates your vagus nerve which helps to calm you down. Decluttering and cleaning give you a sense of peace.

Stress can do a number on the body. It can impact blood pressure and your immune system. There is hope though. Controlled breathing and yoga are effective for managing stress. Gentle poses like Child’s Pose, leaning your legs up on the wall, and Corpse Pose can help you decompress. Need a boost of energy? Poses such as Downward Dog, Cat-Cow, and Sun Salutation will invigorate you.

Mindfulness Meditation provides serenity. It helps one to stay present. The first step is setting the tone for a relaxed environment. Place things that give you comfort in your space. Light a candle and focus on that light during your meditation. Sit on a pillow. Focus on that comfort as you focus on your breathing. Find a calming playlist on Spotify or YouTube. The biggest lesson yoga has to teach us is to have self-compassion and to let go of perfection.

Yoga and meditation will benefit you. Love and light are what this season is all about. Breathe and be present. Living is the dream. Thirstytree Nation wishes you a calm and bright holiday!

We've all heard people say, maybe in half jest, I'm living the dream! (and we hope you are) but living the dream is different than 'living is the dream'. Here at Thirstytree Nation, we believe living is the dream, we have one shot at life and indeed living it is the dream. If we all believed and embraced that living is the dream, would we be so quick to put each other down? Would we be so quick to go to war? The philosophy of living is the dream is rooted in gratitude. Yes, we are indeed grateful for this life and we embrace it and drink it up while we can.

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