If the holiday season has you stressed or you’re not feeling very festive, there is good news! By adding a little yoga practice and mindfulness to your day, you will be able to get through this holiday season better than ever!
Below are a few tips I have put together to help get you through this holiday season.
Being mindful means being present, even if it’s the last thing you feel like doing! The purpose is to allow us to feel our emotions and think thoughts, but not to become overwhelmed with them! Instead accept that they are part of the moment and that they will pass. There’s no right or wrong with mindfulness, only observance.
Stress often comes from overthinking about the past or future, rather than remaining in the present. This can lead to anxiety and stress over what’s to come or what may have happened in the past. The holiday season often means one thing after another, but if you can focus on each thing as it occurs that can ease the tension.
Let Go of Expectations
Often, we have ideas about how we want things to be during the holiday season. Let go of expectations during the holiday season and simply let things happen. Not everything is going to turn out perfectly, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it for the way it is.
Be Compassionate for Yourself and Others
This may seem easy, however during the holiday season we often forget to practice kindness to ourselves and others. Spending quiet time with yourself when needed can relieve the pressure by being mindful in the moment. Try to avoid rehashing any past tensions and instead focus on the good moments. Reflect on the good things whether they’re related specifically to the holiday season or just a nice moment in your day.
The holiday season isn’t the time to set aside your yoga practice or let it slide. If anything, you should make more time to practice yoga during the holidays, to help you relieve any stress or tension you might have. There’s always time for a round of Simple Sun Salutations or Yin yoga to help you destress at the end of the day. Practicing yoga in short bursts several times a week when you wake up or prior to bed can work wonders and help you to relax.
Yoga and mindfulness can help to alleviate tension that builds during the holiday season. Even if you enjoy this time of year and you’re having fun, things can get a little overwhelming and put stress on your body. Don’t forget the benefits of practicing yoga and mindfulness can have.
The holiday season can be especially overwhelming for many people. The thought of shopping, entertaining family and friends and holiday cooking can leave most of us feeling completely drained! It is during these times that our Chakras can become out of balance. What better time than now to pause and meditate. Each energy point relates to certain aspects of our lives which can be enhanced and improved through Chakra meditation.
Whether we realize it or not, our Chakras are constantly working in the body. They influence our mental and our physical state of being. By focusing the attention to these areas, we can begin to improve various aspects of our lives thus feeling more harmonious, peaceful and balanced. If one of your Chakras is out of balance, meditating on the specific Chakra can do wonders for your overall well-being, or if you really want a boost, wear the specific color associated with that Chakra! Below are the 7 Chakras in detail and the areas in the body and life they can influence:
The Root Chakra
This is the first Chakra, located at the base of the spine. It symbolizes the energy of the earth flowing into the body and is the correlation between our physical presence and the material world. The color red is associated with the Root Chakra representing health, protection and well-being. Meditating on this Chakra or the color red will enhance these areas in your life.
The Naval Chakra
This Chakra is located just above the Root Chakra, in the lower part of the abdomen. It signifies energies associated with sexuality, happiness, love, compassion, sympathy and understanding. Its corresponding color is orange. Feelings associated with giving and receiving are tied to this Chakra. Meditating on this Chakra or the color orange will allow you to control emotions.
The Solar Plexus Chakra
Located above the Naval Chakra just below the chest, this point focuses on willpower and self-transformation. The power of the subconscious mind, discipline of the ego and ability to control one’s self all emanate from this Chakra, which is associated with the color yellow. Meditate on this one to control your external circumstances as well as your self-esteem.
The Heart Chakra
Associated with the color green, it signifies energy associated with kind nature, forgiveness and unconditional love which extends beyond the physical realm. This Chakra is located in the middle of the chest and centers around perseverance, harmony and patience. Meditating on this Chakra will allow you to heal pain through the power of love.
The Throat Chakra
Located just below the chin in the throat. It symbolizes the power of all forms of communication and how qualities like truth, nobility, character and wisdom can be conveyed with the correct purpose and respect. It is associated with the color sky blue and also revolves around extra sensory communication. Meditating on this Chakra will allow you to express yourself truthfully at all times.
The Brow Chakra
Symbolizes intuition, insight, instinct and how the mind perceives the soul. Concentrating on this Chakra will give you peace of mind and stimulate your imagination. The color synonymous with this Chakra is indigo and relates to spiritual guidance and direction. Meditating on it will allow you to access the path to your inner wisdom.
The Crown Chakra
The Crown Chakra is located at the top of the head. It signifies our higher consciousness and our relationship between with the world around us. The highest powers of the mind and spirit can be reached by meditating on this Chakra. Its color is violet, and it also serves to encompass the entire body within the realms of spirituality.
By turning your attention on the Chakras, they can enable you with the ability to align with the physical and non-physical elements of the body. Do not force this process; with experience, you should find it more natural for your focus to drift to the chakras that are most in need of balancing when you meditate. Hopefully, this introduction to chakra meditation has been enlightening.
The holiday season is upon us and with that often comes stress and anxiety. So, if gift buying, holiday parties and baking holiday treats have you feeling stressed out, sluggish or just plain drained, rest assured you are not alone. Here are my 5 yoga tips to help relieve some of your holiday stress:
Breathe: This is the simplest and most effective way we can do to calm the nervous system is to breathe deeply with awareness. Sit tall or lie on your back. Close your eyes. Fill your belly with breath on your inhale and release all the air from your lungs on the exhale. Continue for 5-10 minutes resting your awareness solely on your breath and feeling the tension fall a way.
Practice gratitude: We have so many blessings in our lives, whether it’s the food on our plate, the roof over our head or sharing a laugh with a loved one, become aware of the abundance in your life by simply being aware.
Remain dedicated to your yoga practice: It is in times of stress that our yoga practice holds the most importance. By dedicating time to yourself through your practice, you will begin to feel more calm and relaxed. Even a 15-minute home practice will help connect the body and mind, improving concentration and relieving stress.
Have Fun: This may seem difficult, but have fun! Play games with your kids, play in the snow, sing Christmas songs out loud, watch “Home Alone” or any funny Christmas movie or cartoon. Finding playfulness in our daily activities helps us to not take ourselves too seriously. It’s hard to feel anxious, sad or angry when you are laughing, so even if it feels a bit fake at first, crack a smile and see what happens.
Cultivate compassion, forgiveness and peace: Easier said than done, right? Not necessarily. The key to cultivating happiness is forgiveness; forgiveness of others, forgiveness of self. Holding onto a grudge hurts you in the end. Forgiveness is a choice and it requires a lot of compassion that ultimately leads to peace and we can all use peace in our lives no matter what time of the year.
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