The holidays are often a stressful time for people - in fact a recent study showed this season is one of the "Peak Break-Up Times" of the year! So whether your relationship is on your mind or you're mentally preparing yourself to deal with another classic episode of drama-rama family edition, REALthings is in your corner. Here are 5 mindful ways to #findjoy this holiday season:
1. Take Mini Meditation Breaks
In the midst of a chaotic moment, stop what you are doing and take a breath. Follow the air as it enters your nose, fills your lungs and flows out through your mouth. This exercise actually provides a great "break" for your brain from incessant thinking! Try it throughout the day to take a quick break.
2. Do Something Kind for Yourself Once a week
We often don't realize that giving back to others starts with giving back to ourselves. If you're unhappy, it is nearly impossible to share happiness with others. Give yourself the attention you need. Ask yourself - what can I do to feel nourished and renewed this week? This day? this hour? This moment?
3. Follow the 5-minute Rule
At a recent conference we heard Adam Grant, author of Give & Take, talk about his 5-minute rule. It's simple - if someone asks you to do them a favour that will take less than 5 minutes of your time, say yes! It's amazing how giving back to the people in your life in little ways like this can make you and others feel great
Make more of an effort to listen to what other people are saying. We are often so busy thinking about how we want to respond to someone, we forget to listen to them. Being a mindful listener is a great way to better your communication skills and connect in a deeper way with those around you. Try just listening to someone for 3 minutes without responding or interrupting with your whole attention.
5. Don't Take Yourself Too Seriously!
Remember that the holidays are actually a celebration of ‘comfort and joy’. Remember to laugh. Step outside yourself and celebrate all the things you do when you're under stress! Follow Rumi's advice in his poem the ‘Guest House’ and "welcome and entertain them all (i.e. all the parts of you that bug you)". Try and catch yourself in your moments of holiday frenzy and remember that life is not as serious as it seems!