Thank you for all your lovely questions, comments, shares, and stories this past year. In this Miniview (Mini Q & A Interview Series), I’ll answer one question at a time.
Q: What do you do to reduce stress during the holidays?
A: We design our holiday traditions and routines to be what we need and change as needed. Here are 10 things we do to relax and have holiday fun together.
- Playing festive background music sets a fun mood. We set the volume loud enough to sing along, but quiet enough to listen to one another. We like to sing sweet carols and play instruments together. My favourite gift is a child’s song on the piano or a nice little hum while playing.
- Simple, easy recipes of our favourite foods help us so we’re not cooking all day, but rather playing and eating together. We shop early as many grocery stores close on the holiday. Lists are helpful, but we don’t have to do everything on the list. We choose…
- A walk in the snowy fresh air boosts energy, and then we’re ready to cozy up back inside by the fire.
- Warm drinks and sweet wintery stories, read under the covers are my favourite. No commercials leave lots of sound space for sweet angel giggles…
- Lots of good rest, water, breaks for alone time, and healthy foods (organic vegan) help keep us going when visitor energy overwhelms, positively or negatively. Yes, empaths and highly sensitive people, this is for you, but also for everyone. We prefer small group visits. When you’re sensitive, large group parties have too many overlapping conversations, and this causes us illness. Keeping energy for the Self is very important during the holidays. What can you do to boost energy instead of allowing it to be drained? We like quiet snowy days at home, reading and drawing…taking our day off to have a day off at home.
- Sharing wishes! We write down our wishes and place them in the stockings. Then, on the holiday morning, we read them all together. Sharing wishes helps them come true!
- Keeping to our regular routine is key. Holiday fun is great, but not worth the stress if the aftermath is illness or a disrupted routine. Key for young children…and me…
- I like to use beautiful reusable gift wrapping, such as a holiday box with attached ribbon bow, well made gift bags, or reusuable cloth bags or fabric. I choose the colours, patterns, prints, and textures to match our sitting room colours so they are a harmonious part of the interior design. At present opening time, there is no garbage/recycling. Just store fold, stack, and store for the next holiday. I collect ones that are good for Valentine’s Day, Birthdays, etc. Less gifts, of lovely good quality, allows us to remember the gifts each year. Something special to hold Dear and use for the long term.
- When visiting friends & family, be your natural sweet Self. Visits are just visits, not interviews. The best way to get (re)acquainted is to sit kindly together and let the conversation naturally flow. Peppering with personal questions isn’t polite and creates a frenzied atmosphere. Getting to know someone doesn’t depend on whether or not they are dating someone, or if they have the job you want them to do. Love is unconditional. A calm chat about snow and pie can tell you more about your Dear Ones than one hundred answered questions. Gently read their eyes, hand motions, body language, and energy to see if they are comfortable in your chats. Listen to their words and tone. You can always sit and listen to holiday tunes together, or even have a dance and a laugh! Allow holidays to be fun, and not too serious. *Keep the illness diary updates to a minimum…unless help is direly needed. I remember many ‘contests’ of relatives over who is feeling worse. Oh my…
- ***Loving words and actions are the best gift anyone could receive. ♥ Show someone your Real Love every moment, every day. If you see anyone that needs help, and that is most people, help them while keeping your safety boundaries.
I hope you have a lovely, safe holiday.
P.S. If you use substances: Don’t ever drive drunk, angry, or under the influence of drugs. Get a ride or stay put. Substances are not needed to have fun, deal with issues, or ‘be’ you. They cloud your senses and cause more issues. The body already produces enough chemical reactions to keep you mystified. Think of all the sweet, darling people and families driving home from their grandparent’s house, the ballet, the school play, or the choir show. Distracted driving is too easy to do. If tired while travelling, stay overnight at at hotel to avoid accidents. If you want to change someone’s life forever, let it be in a positive way. There is enough suffering for the world to heal. Be aware, be kind, be Love.
Music of the Moment: The Christmas Waltz, Frank Sinatra