As we approach the holiday season, aligning with our center is of upmost importance. Within all areas of life, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Because as we know, the saying the most wonderful time of the year, in theory maybe, in real life? Below I have listed a few things I enjoy doing/being to feel centered, if you have something that works for you, please share in the comments. It could be the one idea that helps someone else, and we’re all in this life adventure together.
EXERCISE. I remind myself when doing any exercise activity, [qigong, tai chi, yoga, walking, pilates, eceterra] to focus on alignment first and then. For example: there is a simple standing stretch, I teach as a qigong warmup. I reach one arm up and over, and lean the body to that side. As I lean, I become aware of my center, and notice if my weight has shifted more to the leaning side. If it has, I shift my weight back to 50/50 within each leg, breathe and feel the difference. Feeling the stability below and the connection above through being grounded and centered.
And I invite you to choose to exercise during the holidays… find something you enjoy. Don’t make it one more thing to add to your list, instead look forward to it.
HOLIDAY FOOD. Now, I am not one to tell you what to indulge in or not, this is an individual preference. For me, it’s always something homemade. I make a very tasty pumpkin tort, and I only make it once a year. My mom, daughter and I get together every year and make homemade sugar cookies, with a wonderful cream cheese frosting. Again, only once a year, but both are made during the holidays. ;-/ My advice? Make every bite count, eat less of it and enjoy it more. Now, I admit, I have [more than once] indulged in those sugar cookies because they are great out of the oven, oh and if one breaks, the first one with frosting, one without—you get the picture. I am doing my best that when I do over indulge, I balance it out the next day with more live food and exercise. Be kind and compassionate with yourself. Am I always? No, but I am getting better.
FAMILY: Holidays connect us with people that we don’t usually see throughout the year or have very little connection. Maybe they see things differently than you do? Good. We are not here to be a carbon-copy of each other. When you start to feel a contraction in your body [feeling out of alignment] regarding an upcoming gathering or event, simply take some conscious breaths, reset and align to your center.
FEELINGS: Feel what you are feeling in any given moment. They are meant to flow through you [e-motions] when we stuff them down with food and/or alcohol, we are only keeping ourselves in a state of being numb. When things arise when having a conversation with someone, feel them, clarify and ask questions. Start out with, “if I am understanding correctly, you are saying ______.” Then if you don’t agree simply say, that’s interesting, and change the subject by asking them a question on something else. Do your best to not go into the judging or resistance energy.
JOY: Choose to be in joy throughout the season, simply ask yourself what brings you joy? For me, it’s reading, rewatching holiday movies, and of course ELF and IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE is on the list. I enjoy making snowflakes out of coffee filters, walking in the snow, feeling snowflakes land on my face while catching one on my tongue, and real conversations.
Again, this one is also very unique to the individual. For me, continuing with my self-practice is HUGE for being in alignment during the holidays. Well, honestly it’s important for me everyday, but especially through the holidays.
Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, this time of year [autumn and winter] are the yin seasons. Meaning more inward energy than outward a perfect opportunity to be with yourself and Source (aka God, Higher-Self, Intuition). Alignment first and then create the conversation within … ask questions and listen. To hear or see your answers, simply ask for signs, symbols and synchronicities.
May the magic of the season unfold within you.