It’s taken me years to develop these seven tips to help you slow down this holiday season. It felt like it was impossible to slow down during the holidays for a long time before I had discovered these tips. There is so much that demands our attention. More gatherings, performances, rituals, routines, and special events about the holiday season.
I am delighted to share some of the simple ways I have learned to reduce the stress and anxiety of this time of year by implementing simple and slow living tactics. I hope you, too, will find benefits in these helpful suggestions.
Why Slow Down During the Holidays?
Before we dig into the seven tips to help you slow down this holiday, it’s essential to consider why going slower is beneficial. Besides reducing stress and anxiety, slowing down allows for more of what matters and time to savor those precious moments.
It’s not always easy to slow down, and, at times, it may feel impossible. But slowing down can help you feel better during the holidays. It can help you make deeper bonds with your family. You may also find that you remember the time together more vividly and in a positive light.
How Do I Simplify the Holidays?
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the holidays, so it’s best if you can take some time to identify what matters most to you during the season. However, there are some sure-fire ways to infuse your holidays with more intention, more meaning, and more of what you desire most. I’ve curated a list of seven tips to help you slow down this holiday that I have used over the past years. I hope you find the suggestions inspiring.
Seven Tips to Help You Slow Down This Holiday Season
Tip #1 Gift Handmade
It may seem counter-intuitive to make space to create handmade gifts in place of purchased ones, but you can’t get homemade gifts done in your jammies late at night with just a few clicks of a button. The beauty of homemade gifts is they do take time. They require the maker to linger in the process, which makes the time far more intentional and devoted to crafting something of meaning and care.
Here are links to some of my favorite homemade gifts to create:
Tip #2 Make Time For Ritual
The holiday season is packed with rituals. Some you may remember from childhood, while others, like light parades and visits with Santa, are ones annually hosted by the community. During the holidays, make time for rituals that you enjoy. Select 2-3 that you and your family wish to experience this year. Mark them on your calendar and hold space for them.
Try to avoid over-booking yourself. It’s okay if some rituals don’t resonate with you this year, but maybe feel better to you another year. Things change, and it’s okay.
Tip #3 Create a Not-To-Do List
Here’s my favorite tip! Create a Not-To-Do List. You read that correctly. Go ahead and create a holiday bucket list. Pour everything out onto a page that you desire to experience during the holiday season. Then, take out a red pen and draw a line through everything but 3-5 things listed. You will now have an entire list of what not to to (the crossed out items) and a list of what to enjoy and do this season (the not crossed out items).
Tip #4 Connect with the Season
Although this may sound very simple, connecting with the season is often overlooked. Make time to watch the snow or rain fall. Take a walk outside in the crisp winter air. Make a cup of tea and sit in a cozy chair with your favorite blanket. Partaking in activities that are seasonally based helps us to ground and feel at ease.
Tip #5 Volunteer & Give Back
When selecting what matters most in your Not To List, consider including a routine or ritual that involves helping others. This can include participating in a food or coat drive. You can collect gifts for children in need. Assemble meals or gift baskets for the sick or the eldery. No matter what you choose, intentionally donating your time during this season will infuse your heart with generosity and cheer.
Volunterring is a wonderful way to tend to your community as family. Wanting a safe place for you and your family to live takes work. Not just from politicians and those who work for cities, but every-day citizens can make a big difference as they give of their time and resources.
Even when times are tight, there is always a chance to give back to your community. Often, people find that when they volunteer that they are happier, feel committed to the place they live, and have more agency in their life overall.
Tip #6 Schedule In Rest
As you plan how to spend your holiday season, don’t forget to schedule in time for rest. Rest can look differently for each of us. Some require time alone in the quiet, while others recharge with small groups of friends over a meal. No matter how you choose to replenish, make sure to schedule at least a few hours a week to unwind and reconnect to yourself.
To make it even easier, I have curated a special workshop to celebrate and honor the return of the light and celebrate the Winter Solstice on December 20th, 2022. During the workshop we will explore building a comfy nest where we will enjoy simple and nourishing movement to settle in for a deep restorative rest. Additionally, we will create ritual satchels to help us replenish for the season ahead. Grab your seat in this online workshop when you click this link.
Tip #7 Cook Your Favorite Meals & Treats
Do you have fond memories of certain treats or meals your relatives would make during this time of year? There is nothing that will more quickly connect you to those comforting feelings than making a favorite family recipe. Fill your kitchen with your favorite comforting aromas to instantly connect you more deeply to the season, and make new lasting memories, too.
How Do You Like to Slow Down and Make the Holidays Happy?
I hope these simple tips will help you savor the season. I would love to hear your additional tips and ideas of how to slow down and enjoy the season. Please leave a comment or send us an email.