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With the holidays right around the corner, you may be feeling the crunch. Finding gifts, preparing meals, dealing with family and coworkers, going to holiday parties and on and on… It’s enough to drive anyone’s stress levels through the roof! The past few years you may have felt it more than usual because Thanksgiving was later in November. Here are a few tips to prevent you from hitting your melting point:

Bring mindfulness to the moment. Even if you’re standing in line somewhere. When you’re feeling frustrated or scared. Stop. Notice your breath without changing anything. Notice how your body feels. Bringing mindfulness to your most frustrating or overwhelming moments can give you some perspective.

Speaking of mindfulness…meditate for 1-2 minutes. While you’re walking, standing, sitting or lying down, take a slow breath in and out and come back to your breath. Keep your eyes open with a soft gaze. Breathe lower into your thoracic until you reach your low abdomen which is the powerhouse of energy in Qi Gong called dan tian. Notice how your body feels with each breath.

Enjoy creature comforts. A soft blanket or scarf. Your favorite tea or rom-com. A warm bath with your favorite bath salts. Now is the time to make self-care a priority and not let it fall by the wayside with your busy holiday schedule. You will see a huge difference when you take the time.

Make a to-not-do list. Instead of taking on more responsibilities, start taking them off your list. Don’t be afraid to say no. Make yourself a card that has the word no on it. Hold up the card when you can’t say it out loud. My friend Leah even made a pillow with the word no embroidered on it.

Get acupuncture. Acupuncture is a fantastic way to naturally reduce stress during the holidays. It calms your mind, relaxes your body and leaves you with an increased sense of well-being. To learn more about how acupuncture can help, visit this page.

Don’t forget to remember the true meaning of the holiday season. It’s easy to get distracted during the holidays from this purpose. This holiday season take good care of yourself, replenish your energy and do your best. Good luck and Happy Holidays!

What do you like to do to unwind during the holidays? We’d love to hear from you! Please share your tips in the comments below.

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