How to best take care of yourself, body and mind, through the holidays and into the new year.
Some call this the busiest time of the year, with social gatherings, family festivities, last minutes shopping for gifts, tying up loose ends at work, and not mention what all the decadent treats and tasty libations are doing to our energy.
Here are my top five quick tips to help you enjoy your holidays while staying strong and well:
1. Stay well rested- The adequate amount of quality sleep not only reduces inflammation but also helps clear your brain of toxins and metabolic waste products. Sleep is critical to keep your brain's unique waste management system fully functional. Optimal sleep is anywhere between 7-9 hours for most people. Pro-tip: try to shoot for 8 hours, in a cold, very dark room!
2. Eat well- Enjoy the holiday goodies and libations, but also be sure to stay hydrated, get your greens, good healthy fats and protein in to keep you satiated and to help curve sugar cravings. Pro-tip: Start your morning with a glass of warm lemon water; drinking any water, especially warm water, first thing in the morning can help flush the digestive system and rehydrate the body, so start your day with a glass or two!
3. Keep your routine- Staying as close as you can to your daily routine will help keep you grounded and less stressed. Try to exercise at the same time, and sleep and wake up at regular times. Give yourself grace to not have to say yes to every party invitation and set boundaries with your commitments.
4. Keep your Peace of Mind- If you are feeling stressed and or overwhelmed, regain your awareness by breathing. Sitting still and taking time out to mindfully breathe will stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system- rest and digest, and remove you from the flight or fight mode. A great exercise to try is the 4-7-8 technique by Dr. Weil:
4-7-8 Breathing Technique
Inhale for 4 seconds through your nose (be sure to breathe all the way into your belly)
Hold for 7 seconds
Exhale through your mouth for 8 seconds
Repeat 4 times
5. Be present! "Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity."- Simone Weil
I wish you a happy holiday season with many wonderful celebrations, delicious foods and treats and meaningful interactions. It's an enjoyable time of year but can also be overwhelming, so please be kind to yourself and rest when needed! See you in 2019!
In good health,