All of the various activities and gatherings that come with the holiday season can be quite enjoyable and exciting, but they are also notoriously known to bring with them quite a bit of stress and anxiety. We can make mindful choices to keep our emotional, physical and spiritual self in check. Here are a few ideas…..

Over the years, studies have consistently shown that material possessions do not create happiness and that experiences are much more intrinsically fulfilling than things. Shared experiences connect us more to other people than shared consumption. So, when formulating gift ideas for loved ones, focus on experiences rather than things. They can be enjoyed by family and friends together, building connections, memories, bonds and even journeys. Giving an experience gift can be thoughtful, and rewarding to both the giver and receiver. Some of my favorite ideas are: tickets to see a play, a trip to the museum, horseback riding lessons, a spa or wellness day (think IMAGINE FLOAT), a weekend getaway, a sporting event, or even movie tickets and a dinner.

Create a SELF-CARE routine:
Taking care of yourself is an essential part of taking care of others. The healthier the tree, the better the fruit it can offer
For many, the holidays bring joy but also for many it can be a lonely and emotional time. Self-care can help balance emotions and recharge your batteries while allowing for personal growth and healing. Whether it is planning daily tea time with your favorite mix of relaxing herbs, setting a timer for a much needed power nap, scheduling a healing float therapy session, or taking a quiet walk in nature, these self-care necessities will work wonders to protect your energy levels and lift your spirits. Consider enjoying a restorative, therapeutic float session at Imagine Float to complement your self-care routine. Floating will relax your mind, body and help to stabilize emotions during the busy holiday season.

Consider putting the phone down for a few hours a week to enjoy weekly intimate lunch dates with friends or family members where you can catch up on life events. A little face time to strengthen friendship bonds can go a long way in bringing more joy and gratitude into your life.

Give Back for a FULL HEART:
In the hustle-bustle of the season, while focusing primarily on family and friends, it is easy to forget about the local families who are struggling to put food on the table or to stay warm during the bitter cold nights of winter. Giving back to the less fortunate in your community can help put the frenzy of the season into perspective while brightening the holidays for many. This act of giving back can help teach meaningful lessons to the youth in our lives who take part in or witness this act of kindness and compassion. A few ideas for giving back this holiday season are: Donate clothing, organize a food drive, knit a scarf for those in the local shelter, visit a nursing home, hand out bags of snacks and essentials to the homeless.

It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into the giving” – Mother Teresa.

By Susan Cancian, CHHC AAPD
Health Coach at Imagine Float 

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