Are you a festive season ‘bah-humbug’? Then check out my festive season survival kit.
This Christmas holidays I’m changing things up and heading to hotter climes – bring on the SUNSHINE, I can’t wait! I’ll be honest, since we’ve been hitting the minus numbers in the weather temp, I’ve started counting down to departure.
Ok, I’m gonna put this out there early on… For some people Christmas ain’t that great. I’m going to confess, it’s not exactly my fav time of year these days either. Before you think I’m going to spiral into a tale of misery, stop right there, you know me better than that.
Reality is my family circumstances have significantly changed over the past six years and what was once a big family time is now very quiet, and for me personally has sometimes been a lonely drag of ten days that I couldn’t wait to be over and done with.
As I’ve experienced my own joyless Christmas’s it connected it me with the fact that other people are out there too, that Christmas can be a really challenging time for. With that in mind, I started to think about how I can make things better for myself and maybe a little better for others who don’t get a kick out of the festive season.
I put together a festive season survival kit to get me through, and by heading off the grim reaper at the pass (so to speak), I’ve been able to turn the festive season into one of self love and relaxation.
Things you can do if you’re not feeling the festive fuzzy-ness ::
- Twinkly lights. Cliché yes but if you’re tempted to be a bit bah-humbug about the festive season, get yourself some twinkly lights, as many as your pocket will allow and festoon them around your living space. Never underestimate the simple joy of happy twinkly lights.
- Candles. I absolutely love them. Even in my most challenged mood, a lit candle with a beautiful scent never fails to lift my spirits. I find the flame so soothing to meditate with and the scents…. Scent of a great candle can simply change everything. My personal candle loves are Jo Malone pomegranate noir, Freesia from Diptyque, or I blend up my own aromatherapy oils and use a candle scent diffuser and send mood lifting aromas whizzing around the home
- Chocolate. Lets face, chances are there is going to be lots of the sweet brown stuff knocking about. If your partial to it then do it well. Stock up on some great quality chocolate to help guide you away from the not so quality good stuff. I love the dark, dark chocolate from Green and Blacks. Ooooh, don’t get me started about the the G & B thins in salted caramel. Plus the probiotic choc in raspberry from Ombar. Final I’ve been known to indulge in a HotelChocolat too.
- The right social gatherings. It’s so tempting to get caught up in what you think you “should” be doing and ending up spending way too much time with people who may not rock you world. Many of us evolve and grow. Who we were when we 10, 20, 30 or 40 years old, may not be the person we are today. So the people that were in your earlier life may not be the people you love being around today. So give yourself a massive permission slip to limit the time with those you love, but don’t necessarily rock your world. And make purposeful plans with those people who are totally your jam and make all the difference to your life.
- Snuggle clothes. These can come in the form of a splendid pair (or three!) of Christmas themed pj’s, relaxed day time clothing, think drop crotch joggers of the most stretchy softest material, big fluffy hoodies, and socks. Warm toasty socks – maybe push the boat out, up the budget and invest in some cashmere socks. Finally, a blanket. No snuggle on the sofa with your favourite box set or movie is the same without your fav blanky! For me personally, the more snuggly and comfy at this time of the year the happier I am.
- Choose your own movies of boxsets. Ok, confession time, I don’t actually own a TV! I like to read, listen to podcasts, the radio and other stuff. But when I’m at a family members house for the holidays I will indulge in TV watching. The only thing is, the programmes on aren’t always my jam, so I prefer to have a boxset (I only discovered boxset 18 months ago – what a revelation!) and my own movie choices too. If I am going to indulge in the TV, I want to make sure I’m watching stuff that rocks my world, makes all the difference to the mood.
- Have a book at the ready. If you read the above point you’ll already know I’m a voracious reader. But I highly recommend having a good book ready to go. Or maybe an old favourite. There is no deeper escapism than diving into an amazing book where you can actually loose yourself for hours.
- A notebook and pen. If you know me or you’ve read any of my blogs before, you’ll probably know I’m an avid writer of a journal. It’s one of the most powerful mind cleansing and re balancing tools I use (along with many of my clients). If you are feeling the heaviness of the season, don’t hold it all in your head. Reach for the note book and indulge in some meditation writing. Basically just write what ever is in your head. It doesn’t have to make sense, or be grammatically correct. It can jump from subject to subject and write like nobody is going to read it. Once you’ve got the junky, unhelpful thoughts out of your mind, leave them there on the page and don’t look back. Allow the process to free you up, cleanse you from the mind drama allowing you to lean back into the festive season.
- Music. Create your mood enhancing anthem play list. Any song or piece of music that lifts your mood or makes you want to get your groove on, then slap it in your anthems play list. I personally use iTunes, but do it whatever way works for you. Again, curate this list like nobody else is going to listen to it, be unashamed in the music you choose, personally the cheesier the better.
- Write a love letter. To your self. A tool I have used for many years in my practice, is to get clients to write a letter to themselves, acknowledging the past harm or harsh words, sending forgiveness and making a pact of love towards themselves along with a strategy of all the simple things they are going to commit in order to keep loving themselves and making it a top priority.