The holidays are meant to be a joyful time for families to come together and celebrate, but often, the stress and busyness of the season can overshadow all of the otherwise merry festivities.
For those of us going through a tough time (be it recovery, sickness, the anxiety, insert your struggle here!) the holidays can be an especially taxing time of year. Between the parties, shows, family get-togethers, shopping, cooking and other special events, remaining in a state of health and balance can feel downright difficult. But with the right intentions and a system of positive support and community, those in recovery can make it through into the New Year with an even better outlook, and healthier attitude than they started out with.
Here’s how you can stay checked in to your continued wellness, even in the midst of the bustling, holiday season:
Keep Practicing Your Rituals: It can be all too easy to overschedule yourself or let other activities encroach on your well-established health routines but don’t let the busy time of year derail your healthy practices. Take your quiet time when you need it. Get to bed at the same time you usually do. Keep writing in your journal. Keep meditating. Keep taking care of yourself.
Keep Prioritizing a Healthy Lifestyle: Of course it’s okay to enjoy some of the delicious treats of the season, like cookies, chocolates, cocoa and more, do what feels right! But not straying too far from your typical healthy diet and activity levels will help you to feel your best throughout, both physically and mentally, and will help you to avoid getting off track in your recovery journey.
Don’t Overschedule Yourself: There are no shortage of festive events to attend during the holiday season, and it’s no secret that navigating the party scene for an individual in recovery can be a little precarious. Honor your journey and your limitations by prioritizing that journey above your social life. If you don’t want to attend an event, don’t. If you want to leave early, leave early! Do what’s most rewarding and healthy for you. Others will understand.
Arm Yourself Ahead of Time: Prepare for success by planning ahead. If you know you will be attending a party with alcohol, but you are not going to be imbibing, consider bringing an alternative beverage that might help you to avoid temptation. If you are working through social anxiety or depression, prepare your spirit and mind with a little meditation before attending an event.
No matter what your journey of recovery looks like, experiencing all that the holidays have to offer can be a positive experience with the right preparation and commitment to self-care. Remembering to be kind and patient with ourselves, and looking for the joy in every opportunity and interaction can help us to actually enjoy the season like we never have before.
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