GOOD MORNING MONDAY – AFFIRMATIVE THOUGHTS FOR A GREAT WEEK
Good Morning. It is Monday once again! How was your weekend? I hope GREAT 😊. Amidst all that you had to do, were you able to pause, reflect and, at least occasionally, “be fully awake and present” to all that you were experiencing? I hope so; and if not, do not “get down on yourself”; today is a new day. Make it a goal to begin building this habit into your life right now. It takes time and practice, but soon it will be part of your “way of being”. A “way of being” that you will find opens your eyes to life from a whole new perspective.
The countdown is on! The holiday season is in full swing. We have only about one week left (approximately) to complete all our tasks. YIKES! It is right about now that we turn up the pressure and begin to push ourselves beyond our limits so that we get everything done. Each of us has probably “made our list” and we are “checking it twice” to ensure we do not forget a thing. But, look at your list again…are YOU on it? Seriously, self-care and compassion are critical. To ensure you do not miss the joy, fun, connection, etc., that this time of the year brings, you need to remember one of the most critical life lessons; taking care of yourself. “If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete” (Jack Kornfield). To be fully present to all your loved ones, you need to take care of YOU. Treat yourself like you would treat a loved one.
I am sure you have figured out that this week my word/concept is Self-Care! You know how easy it is to become overwhelmed and unhappy with yourself during the holiday season. It does not have to be this way. Being kind to yourself during the holidays is the “magical unicorn” of this festive season. It is not selfish; it is foundational. Following are some self-care practice ideas that you can begin right now to take back control of your well-being so that you can be fully present and truly enjoy this magical time of year.
Begin your day with an affirmation – affirmations really are “super-charged” mini self-talks; and can serve as mini “pep talks”. They prime your brain for positive. This simple practice can help you hone your focus, make better decisions, and lower your stress. Here are a few examples of affirmations…
I am grateful for all the joyful things in my life during the holiday
I have plenty of time and energy for everything; I love this holiday
It is ok for me to take time to relax today
I am committed to embracing this holiday in a way that is special to me
My life works wonderfully during the holidays
I hope these examples help get you started😊. Say your affirmation out loud or silently to yourself several times throughout the day – it will change the way you experience your world; and thus, how you react to it.
Remember to get some exercise –the hectic holiday season can derail your normal routine – do not let it. If you have an exercise routine, do your best to stick to it. If you are unable to, or do not have a routine, just remember to “move your body”. Go for a quick walk; outside is preferable, if possible. Being outside; seeing nature is a “stress reliever”. Or, just “shake it off”. Run in place, jump up and down, shake your body. Shake off any bad vibes or frustrating feelings. It may seem silly, but it works!
Breathe – Sit quietly for a moment. Check in with your breath. Your breath gives you clues to your stress level. Are you shallow breathing? If so, stop and take a few deep cleansing breaths. This will relax your body and your mind. If you are feeling overwhelmed, just finding a quiet place to sit and be present – even if for two minutes will make a HUGE difference.
Give yourself permission to STOP – Your “to do” list is a mile long. Expectations you have for yourself are high. Remember that you can only do so much; release the desire/need to be a “superhero” this holiday season. Strive to be the most well-taken care of version of you. You do not have to do it all. It is ok to stop. It is ok to say “no”.
Do something special for yourself – Check in with yourself daily and ask yourself, “how am I feeling?” Doing this will give you some insight into your mind and body state. It can help you decipher your needs. You might discover that you need to reach out and ask for help. You might decide that you need a bit of down time with self to just relax, read, buy yourself a favorite coffee or tea, schedule a massage. Or, you might decide that you need some connection time; so, you make plans to see a friend for a quick bite to eat. Whatever is fun or relaxing for you; it does not have to be elaborate!
Those are just a few ideas. You may have many more ideas of your own that will work for you. Incorporating some of these practices into your life may be just the antidote you need to open the door to a happier, healthier holiday season. The holidays are a time for connection, cheer and camaraderie. If you take care of yourself, you will not only enjoy the holiday more; but you will also make the holiday sweeter for those around you.
Have a GREAT day and a GREAT week!