During this most hectic and wonderful time of year, I find myself worried. Yes, we're having family over during the holidays, but that's not (all of) the worry. I worry about the health and wellbeing of my family during this time of mental and emotional stress and potentially unhealthy food and habits.
My family and I eat healthy foods for the most part, we spend all of our dinners together (except that one night I went on a business trip), and we balance our work and play. BUT THE HOLIDAYS are a monster!
My son starts bringing home treats from school made with refined sugars and artificial colors. The stores start filling with distracting glittery decorations that would look so great in our kitchen or living room or outside. The wish list for toys and trinkets starts growing. Our schedule fills with everything from school festivities and conferences to beyond-basic grocery shopping and last-minute haircuts.
So, what’s a mom, a doctor, supposed to do?
Shift focus back to the things that matter to us. That is nature and giving.
We gather up the toys that are in great shape (but neglected) to find new homes and new love. We sign up to help others with our time (since that’s mostly what we have to give). We plan (and actually schedule) time to go outside and see the beautiful desert that we call home. We give to ourselves, others, and the earth purposefully and with love.
This, more than anything, keeps us healthy during the holidays. This connection to Mother Nature and to our fellow humans is better for us than restricting the amount of dairy-free egg nog we consume or signing up for a gym membership in the New Year.
I’m not giving advice. I want to share because maybe this is what you and your family do too. Or maybe you don’t know why the holidays leave you so depleted when they’re supposed to be so exciting. The fact is, the body doesn’t know the difference between good stress and bad stress. Our holiday planning and activities can make our hormones think we’re being chased by an angry turkey. So, wherever your happiness and peace lie, let’s find some connection this holiday season.
Sending you love,