How to Find Extra Time During the Holidays.
In a month from now, Christmas will be over & we will be enjoying my favorite day, Boxing Day. All the presents have been opened, all the food made, & you can enjoy left overs & the time of hanging out with those you love without all the pressures (as you can tell, I do not go shopping on Boxing Day). Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot of wonderful things that happening during the holidays, but sometimes the busyness wears me out & all I want to do is be & not do.
How do we make it through this most busy time of year without feeling totally drained at the end of it?
Stamina is needed but how do we get the stamina to do all the things we love? First of all, we need to determine, what is it that is important for us to do & what can we say NO to. I always say, “no is a complete sentence”. What I mean by this is we can say no to something without having to explain it or feel guilty about it. When I am feeling unsure or that gut feeling that I don’t want to do something, I say no first. If I realize that gut feeling wasn’t dread, but something else & I do really want to do the thing I was asked, you can always say yes after the fact. When we do it the other way around & say yes first, then get up the nerve to say no, it is not taken the same way & it is much harder to do.
But how do we determine what we want to say yes & no to? Taking time out of your busy life to just breath, do a few yoga poses, meditate, or any other part of your practice, we allow ourselves a bit of space. In this space, we can release tensions held in our body & mind, let go of the busyness of life & check into our inner self, that place of wisdom that helps us make decisions based on our needs not our wants. The other benefit of taking a break & breathing is that our body gets more oxygen which helps all of our systems to work more affectively & to keep going when we need to.
I have been challenging all of my students this week to try something this holiday season. When you feel at your busiest, when you really don’t think you have time to take a break, to do just that, take a break. Even if it is just for a few minutes to simply take some long exhales & allow deep inhales. The break itself will help us to clear our minds & become more focused. Our body will be able to release some of it’s tension & we will find the stamina to keep going & in the end, may get done the things we are doing faster & with less resistance. If you don’t believe me, try it for yourself & see what happens. You may even find in those few minutes of time out, that you realize that all you are “needing to do” may not all be necessary. You might be able to prioritize all you are doing & let go of some of it. You can connect to the true reason of what the holidays mean to you & how you wish to best experience it. When we are constantly doing things, we miss all the wonderful things that are all around us, if we would just take a moment to stop & see them.
So take time to be more restorative & nurturing this year, by doing your own practice or even taking a workshop or two to help give you tools on how to relax & gain some stamina to make it through. Go to yogamcc.com to see what is available for classes & workshops, like Support & Release with Melissa Smith on Dec 4.
You can even learn some yoga poses that can help open the area around you lungs which will support that deeper breath you would like to take. See some ideas in this article http://www.yogajournal.com/article/lifestyle/going-the-distance/
So this time of year, which is meant to be more restorative & introspective, due to the shorter, cooler days, can you too find ways to be restorative. When you do, you will find your energy returning & a new perspective on what is important to do, or not to do.
Yoga is invigoration in relaxation. Freedom in routine. Confidence through self control. Energy within and energy without. ~Terri Guillemets, 2002
Anne Cox E-RYT 500