Argh Christmas has come round again and here’s a little guide to survival. Whether you’re madly busy or not busy enough, these mindfulness tips can help.
Frantically working out the logistics – everything from when to get to Nan’s, to how to fit in all the family visits – Christmas at ours and at the in-laws? With the cousins too? Oh and who’s turn is it to do the cooking? Preparing kid’s nativity play costumes, neighbours who’ve invited you for drinky-poos, families, kid’s friends’ families – it’s all a bit much, really.
And that’s only the logistical minefield! Combined with lists of presents and luxuries to buy at Christmas it can feel that a straw is going to break a festive camel’s back at some point soon. Screaming into a pillow seems like a very sensible choice. Just as our bodies and minds are rebelling, we combine that with the classic Christmas combination of over-eating processed fatty and sugary foods and over-consumption of alcohol. That’s guaranteed to cause stress and overwhelm to the calmest of people’s adrenal systems.
Drink or Think
Right now, we could either choose another drink and numb ourself, or seek help with a little mindfulness. Mindfulness is just a reminder, to stay present in the here and now. The idea being that it’s impossible to feel overwhelmed with stress or anxiety when you’re really focused on the present. Maybe you might find some tips and techniques useful for those stressful moments. Mindfulness can be a great reminder that in fact all the stresses are a blessing. The family? The overwhelm of loving friends? The luxuries? Are all the biggest blessing we could have.
For us singles, Christmas can be a different kind of overwhelming
Where the families are charging around, unable to keep the diary for all the different people they’ve said they’d see, places they’ve said they’d go to, children’s pantomimes to attend, parties and plays, well, us single folks can have the opposite issue. I see the folks running round unable to keep track of invitations, and yet the diary of a single person, especially one who isn’t the most sociable, can seem a little dauntingly empty. When friends tell me that they’d rather meet up in January when it’s quieter it feels just a little bit sad when my diary isn’t awash with social occasions to wear my Christmas glitz to.
It seems that all the ads and hype around Christmas seem to involve families. I don’t see my situation represented and although I’m very happily single, and single by choice, somehow Christmas makes me question that choice. The pressure of being coupled and cosy is just too much, sometimes I think. In fact, even I, the most single of singles am starting to date at this time of year as there’s just something in the air around Christmas that makes single too difficult.
Christmas clearly isn’t the perfect time to connect with friends, who all seem to be too busy with their frenzies of shopping and families, but this is the very best time to re-connect with yourself, with your intentions, with your hopes and dreams. This is the best time of year for looking back on the year, for re-connecting to your intentions of the previous year and reflecting on the year. It’s the perfect time for sitting quietly and feeling gratitude for all the good that the year has brought, the friendships, connections and love, and to reflect on the sheer beauty of the world. When all the world is running round in a frenzy, isn’t it just wonderful that us lucky singletons have this time as a natural pause, a breathing space to relish the best present this Christmas – the present.
We hope you enjoy our Mindful Moments – whichever Christmas you are having, as a special gift to yourself, so you can go out into the world bigger, stronger and happier than ever before, and keep giving with everything you have.
This post was written by Movement For Modern Life’s fabulous founder, Kat Farrants.