Mindfulness During the Holidays | iHanuman

iHanuman

Love, Service, Devotion, Yoga

Mindfulness During the Holidays

Remember, so much of who we are is conditioning. Media, family, culture all pressure us into conformity and consumerism during this time of year (even some yoga centers with enticing ads like 10% off!). However, being a conscious yogi, you can reduce stress greatly during this time with these reminders:
BREATHE - Take a BREATH BREAK at the very first sign of tension rising. Pause, inhaled deeply, and let the out breath just fall out - even with a loud "Haaaaaaaaaa" if it's not too embarrassing. And there is always good ole Lions Face to really help release tension. (Stick tongue all the way out to bottom of chin, exhale loudly wiggling your uvula, and roll your eyes up to the crown of the head all on the big exhale).
SAY NO - You can't hope to do all of the things and attend all of the events that most of us find coming up in our lives during the holidays. Prepare your polite refusal speech ahead of time and just say "no thanks."
TAKE TIME FOR YOU -Even if its just a daily 10 minute walk, a soak in hot bath, a short yoga routine, or even a 10 minute meditation sitting in your favorite chair. You'll find it amazing how much more you can handle and how quickly you will recover from any stress if you take this time for yourself. Make this a daily habit, a daily priority!
LET IT BE - Play the Beatles song of the same name if you have it and then practice it, particularly around potential conflict areas, relatives are good practice for this. When conflict arises, take a deep breath and ask yourself if you can just 'let it be" and not engage.
HAVE FUN - Do whatever you need to do to make your holiday time fun for yourself. Ask yourself "What do I need to include in my holiday plans to make sure I have fun?" After all, holidays were meant to be fun times, and more importantly sacred times, (Thanksgiving being a time of gratefulness of this abundance; Christmas, Kwanzaa and Hanukah about the holy spirit within us all), not just times of chores and drudgery. If you find yourself not having any fun take a time out and figure out what needs to change to make it fun.
CONSCIOUS CONSUMERISM - Remember, we vote with our dollars. Adbusters.org recommends that you rethink the season with a Buy Nothing Christmas; the Seva Foundation allows you to dedicate gifts of service; and Carbonfund.org helps you help the environment by offsetting the carbon footprint of your loved ones. Homemade gifts, (soaps, candles, candies, meals), homemade coupons (hugs, massages, babysitting) and yoga gifts are also wonderful ways to help support your health, your planet's health.
Love,
Steph

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