Christmas is upon us.

 Just the thought of something being ‘upon’ us can feel like a heavy burden.

Holiday time can be a time of celebration, laughter and fun for some.

For others it can be a highly stressful and anxious time.

There are some common traps we can fall into. Even with the best intentions, we may get caught up with expectations leaving us feeling flat and disappointed as we move into the New Year.

Here are a few useful tips, tools and strategies which will help you, not just at Christmas but throughout the year.

1. Stop Trying to Be Perfect There is NO ‘perfect’!

  • Are you someone who keeps going back to something to make the smallest of changes?
  • Do you walk past the tree and feel the urge to rearrange a bauble or the position of a present?

Perfect is an illusion, something we can never achieve but we can in the pursuit of perfect drive ourselves and others mad in the process!
Begin saying to yourself ‘It’s good enough.’ Let that be your mantra and you will release some of the pressure you put on yourself and others.
Put things into perspective. What is your intention? is it to have a relaxed time or are you striving to be admired by others for your attention to detail?

2. Affirmations
If you don’t believe in these, just give it a go. I did and they really do work!
The key is repetition.
Create a positive statement; write it down for greater effect. Use your own words but here are some examples: 

  • I AM enjoying this precious time with my family
  • I give myself permission to relax
  • I am handling it! 

3. Self Care 
Do you find yourself slumped in the chair totally exhausted by 7pm on Christmas Day, saying ‘yipee – another year over’ and thinking ‘is it bedtime yet?’,

Not one of your friends or family is worth this feeling. But it’s you who are responsible for looking after yourself.

  1. Check in with yourself now (I mean NOW!). 
  2. You are probably shallow breathing from high in your chest.
  3. Notice your shoulders, are they hunched up under your ears?
  4. Listen to this short relaxing meditation, it’s only 7 minutes long. 
  5. Feels good doesn’t it?

Start doing this now and by Christmas you’ll be a personification of calmness! 

4. Do something different 

  • What can you do differently?
  • Why keep doing something that you don’t enjoy?

The betting is that the others don’t enjoy it either.

I remember my Dad at the age of 80 telling us that he didn’t like turkey but hadn’t like to say anything!

Talk before the big day and ask for everyone’s input – it might be that you don’t even spend it together?

If you do it the same as last year it will probably end up the same. 

5. They Can’t Mind Read! 

  • Do you stomp around the house seething inside whilst they lounge in front of the TV?
  • Do you mutter under your breath ‘don’t you move I’ll do it all!’

All they know is that you are in a bad mood, so they’ll try and keep out of your way. Don’t expect people to mind read. Subtlety doesn’t work.
Be open and ask for help, if possible, before you need it rather than when you have worked yourself up to boiling point.    
 And finally…..If you want to make sure that next year is even better than this year, why not get in touch? and have a chat or a COMPLIMENTARY Ccoaching/Hypno-Coaching session.

Wishing you a peaceful and relaxed holiday.

P.S. Most of all be kind to yourself, no one remembers the gravy but they will remember the warmth and laughter!

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