Sending you wishes that your Christmas sparkles with moments of love, laughter and goodwill, May 2015 be full of contentment and joy.
I would like to take a moment to say Thank You for being here with me!
The holiday season is upon us. And for those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere, nature has already gone into its dormant phase. Mother Earth is hibernating. The trees have shed their leaves, snow covers the ground here in most of Alberta.This should be a time when we too seek solitude, go within, and take a little time off. It’s what our bodies want, it’s what our minds crave; yet, most of us ignore the signs, putting in ever longer hours as the days grow increasingly shorter. For most people, it’s CRAZY BUSY. Stores are blaring holiday music and telling you there’s just a few shopping days left ’till Xmas. Companies are cranking away to make their end-of year financial goals. Families and friends are making plans to visit and celebrate. Social calendars have booked up. And while our human ways can feel productive and even celebratory at holiday time, it’s also quite exhausting for most people.Not to mention that we are running COUNTER to the slower rhythms of nature at this time of year. Winter is meant of be a time of REST!
Yes, I said REST.
This is a word we seem to have forgotten in our fast-paced Western Culture. We are moving and lightning speed and multi-tasking like mad. We are doing MORE with LESS support. And most of us are really pretty tired.
In nature, we celebrate the changing of the seasons. And every farmer knows that a recipe for getting an healthy abundant crop is to leave the fields fallow for a period of time. But it’s not that nothing is happening during these fallow periods. The soil is regenerating. The nutrients are building back up. The plants are building their internal infrastructure and their root system is expanding beneath the ground. Without this fallow time, nature could not come out in her full splendor next Spring-with bountiful crops and glorious flowers.
We humans aren’t so different. We also need deep periods of stillness, rest, and “down time.” But our culture doesn’t really celebrate these things. With only 2 weeks of vacation a year at most jobs, there’s time for little more than a few family visits or a quick vacation.
So we keep pushing and pushing. And many of us, including me, have ended-up burnt out, unhealthy and generally not taking very good care of US. I was reading an article recently where it stated that approximately 80% of people today will experience adrenal fatigue in their lifetime. Wow.
So if you want to keep up your big, bright life. If you want to fully show-up for your family and your friends; if you want to make a big difference, you have really got to REST my friends. And nurture yourselves! This is not selfish behavior, but totally REQUIRED for folks who are going to be putting out a lot into the world. And I know a bit about all of you-you GIVE a lot. And you’ll burnout FOR REAL if you don’t charge up those batteries.
So here’s my suggestions of key holiday gifts to YOURSELF. If you fill up your own cup so that you are radiant and abundant, this will be nothing but FABULOUS for you, your family, and your work.
Self Care Secrets Revealed
10 Tips For Holiday Self-Nurturance
1. Sleep a lot! I highly recommend averaging 9-10 hours of sleep per night-at least for a little while. You might think I am off my rocker, but just try it for a few days. You will thank me later.
2. Get regular bodywork (a.k.a. Reiki). Not just once a year on your birthday. I normally receive a reiki session and a massage, at least once a month – If I could I would go every other week.
3. Take a day of Sabbath. I suggest every week, but at least every other week. When I say “Sabbath,” I mean a day with no plans, no “home projects,” no laundry. Just a day where you get to do whatever would bring you the greatest joy or satisfaction in the moment. Yoga class? Spontaneous hike? Read a book? If you have kids, you will probably need to drop them at a friend’s house for the day to make it possible. And you can reciprocate the favor the next week.
4. Uplevel your fragrance with essential oils.We all want to smell yummy, but I encourage you to toss a few of those chemical perfumes and opt for some essential oils. Essential Energy Healing is now carrying IN STOCK, Chakra Essential Oils and a few new High Vibrational Blends like The Rainbow Blend, which is a great balance and harmonizer for the body. It seems to be my clients favorite as well! These oils make a great holiday gift too. You can get them here: http:// essentialenergyhealing.ca/ chakra-essential-oils/ or stop by!
5. Expand in front of the fire. Let yourself just lay on the floor in front of a cozy fire with a lot of pillows and some blankets. This can be a great opportunity to expand your consciousness and engage your intuition. I like to ask deep soul questions into the fire, then watch for the shapes and images that appear in the flames. One can interpret those images as answers to the questions posed-a beautiful collaboration between you and the greater Spirit of life.
6. Try a weekly resorative yoga class at a local studio. For those of you unfamiliar with restorative yoga, this is not a dynamic faced-paced yoga-cize class for fat burning. No, not at all. It’s more like doing a restorative “nap time” in some gentle stretch positions, but with lots of props and support. Now entering the chill zone! http://www. goodkarmayogaclass.com/
7. Support your spirit with flower essences.Those who are energetically sensitive will especially notice the effects. I’ve been using a common blend called “Rescue Remedy” made by Bach.
8. Take long baths. After a stressful day, my favorite activity is a long bath with candle light and some mellow music I have been using Pink Himalayan Sea salts in my bath for years, and they are great. You can add some relaxing essential oils such as lavender. Let yourself soak for a good while-at least 30 minutes.
9. Enjoy a coconut lube job. After that long bath I mentioned above, try topping it off with an slippery layer of coconut oil-straight out of the food pantry! It’s especially nice if you take time to apply it slowly to your body, imagining you are sending love to every part of your body as you apply the oil. This oil will leave your skin feeling so soft and supple, and it can be used at night in your hair-if it’s dry or color treated. And it smells and tastes great! You can get it at a health food store and is usually found near the olive oil. Mmmm…
10. Celebrate the Winter Solstice Winter Solstice is the longest night of the year. It’s a time to celebrate the darkness and its stillness, while celebrating our connection to the Earth and the return of the light. On this night we have an opportunity to name and release those situations or patterns which are ready to be “lost into the night.” We have an opportunity to symbolically die and reborn. You might check around in your local area to see if there’s a local Winter Solstice gathering, or create your own alone or with friends.You can check out some ideas with this Winter Solstice2014 Ritual
I have added a reading that deals solely with your Primary Energy Center of Training, or Archangleic Realm of Training. While our Souls work with all seven energies while we are incarnated here, we also choose one specific realm to study and specialize in.
Expressing our Archangelic realm is a major component of our soul’s identity and purpose here on Earth.
Each of us represents the energy of an Archangel realm here on Earth. The expression of this energy helps us to align with our highest path and purpose in our lifetime. At the physical level, these energy centers also correspond to a chakra. Of course, each of us work with all seven chakras. But there would be one particular realm or chakra that we are most aligned to.
My primary Angelic Realm of Training is with the Archangel Michael. It is the energy center of intuition, protection and Divine Truth. It is also associated with the Third Eye Chakra.
Winter Wellness Guide
Winter is here. Along with the colder weather, stress related to end-of-year work goals, events and parties to attend, travel, tight budgets, and impending guests can overwhelm the best of us. We all have a zillion obligations and responsibilities, and it’s very easy to concentrate solely on living up to external expectations and meeting others’ needs. The trouble is, this narrow focus often leads to exhaustion, illness, and burn out.It is so important to remember to take care of yourself during this season so that not only can you get through it unscathed, but also so you can truly delight in the holidays. Self-care should always be on your calendar!
Here are my favorite methods of self-care that will have you happy and thriving through the end of the year and beyond!
- Get Enough Sleep. This can’t be emphasized enough. The fact is, most of us never get enough sleep to start with, but with all the added stress around the holidays, sleep is usually the first casualty. Without proper rest, you’ll be too tired to fully participate in or enjoy all the activities you’ve got planned. And studies show that lack of sleep causes adrenal fatigue, which can lead to weight gain and mood swings. So make getting to bed on time a priority!
- Set Realistic, Unrestrictive Boundaries Around Eating. During the holiday season, it’s likely you’ll be around foods and drinks you don’t normally consume the rest of the year, and most of them are not the healthiest of treats! Instead of struggling (sometimes with much difficulty!) to maintain your usual diet, my suggestion is you cut yourself some slack. But to ensure you don’t wind up feeling bloated, logy, and sick, set some limits for yourself. Perhaps it’s okay to allow yourself dessert, but your boundary is you know there is no way you’ll go back for a second helping. Or, perhaps, you allow yourself to eat whatever you want on a holiday dinner, but beforehand, plan a cleansing diet for the following day. Permit yourself to enjoy the holiday and all the scrumptious food it can bring…just make sure you set limits and boundaries for yourself that will allow you to feel good while enjoying it all.
- Travel Smart. Travel can wear you down and expose you to lots of germs. To ward off any nasty bugs that might waylay you, make sure you wash your hands frequently, avoid salty or fatty plane snacks, and drink plenty of water. Drinking water before, during, and after a flight will ensure you’re not dehydrated. While flying, try to stretch in your seat and move your body as much as you can to prevent muscle stiffness and cramping. You can remove your shoes, curl your toes and release them; you can do ankle circles both clockwise and counterclockwise; you can curl your shoulders forward to stretch your upper back and then press your shoulders back to stretch your upper chest. I also recommend taking any supplements that are appropriate for you; personally I take a multi-vitamin, zinc and extra vitamin C.
- Remember to Breathe. When you’re frantically trying to wrap everything up for the year – your business obligations, travel plans, shopping, cooking, preparing for guests, organizing gatherings, etc. – you can get so busy you literally forget to breathe sometimes. Consciously focusing on your breath can be a wonderful way to regain a sense of grounding and balance. You can focus on your breath in any situation: standing in line at the grocery store, in conversations with others, even at a party. Just take 5 seconds to mindfully bring oxygen into your body, and to release any stress or toxins when you exhale. Those 5 seconds can make a tremendous difference in your mood.
- Create Time for Authentic Connection. With so much to do and so many people to see, it’s easy to fill your plate with conversations that don’t go deep enough to really recharge you or replenish your human need for connection. Make time to have a heart-to-heart talk with a dear friend or beloved aunt. Set aside an hour to help one of the kids in your life with a project they’re working on or play a game with them. The more authentically you are connected to people, the more love and support you will feel.
- Don’t Leave Yourself Out. With all the activity surrounding all of us, it’s easy to get caught up in it all and end up depleted. Take even just 15-30 minutes every day for yourself. Make yourself a cup of tea and curl up with a book. Take a walk. Get a manicure. Write in your journal. This is also a great time to breathe!
- Give Thanks. It IS that time of year, right? What better occasion than the holidays to sit down and truly take stock of all the wonderful things in your life: the people, the material objects, your own talents and areas of brilliance, your pets, your accomplishments and successes. Make a list and keep it handy throughout the season so that you can refer to it whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed or burned out.
This can be a wonderful time of the year, so make sure that you are able to fully enjoy it by taking good care of yourself. Be gentle with yourself and those around you. When you are well-rested and healthy, it is so much easier to complete all your tasks, make progress on your soul-centered project, and
have energy left over for plenty of fun!
This Winter Wellness Guide has been provdied by:
Joanna Lindenbaum, is founder of the Woman Wisdom Success Principles, the proven step-by-step program to help you tap into your deepest wisdom in order to succeed at your BIG projects and your life with JOY! To sign up for her freebie how-to articles and no-charge teleclasses http://www.soulfulcoach.com