Around the holidays, many of us take one of two approaches: deprivation or indulgence. Deprivation results in yearning, perhaps envy, and often a higher-than-thou attitude toward the indulgers. The indulgent ones may experience shame or guilt, and annoyance with the deprivers.
Neither one feels good and yet, the holidays are supposed to feel good. So as an alternative to depriving or indulging, I invite you to savor. Savor is closer to indulge, but does not rhyme with bulge (bonus) and does not necessarily involve egg nog, chocolate santas, or apple pie…but it can (bonus).
You see, you can also savor a sunset or a good heart-to-heart with your favorite uncle, but you would never indulge in these things.
When we savor, we appreciate. We don’t count calories or call it a cheat meal. We conjure up happiness in that bite, sip, aroma…moment. We recognize the impermanance of life and savor another holiday with our aging parents, grandparents…or a new loved one perhaps. We savor our children at the age they are right now…because it will never be again. And we savor ourselves for what we have created, destructed, and fulfilled this year. We savor and we grow in reverence and in understanding of what is truly important…not the thing, but the savor-ing.
To strengthen willPower, we must practice… and this week’s is a fun practice. So jump in and savor it all.
- Get nostalgic. Think back on the holidays when you were a kid. What traditions can you recreate this week?
- Use music to “put you in the mood”. My iheartradio app plays Christmas music continuously without interruption (Christmas Lites).
- Take a nap. Honor the seasonal urge to hibernate.
- Get outside. Brisk cold air. Snow. Or, if you’re in Vegas, some well-needed Vitamin D.
- If you’re taking time off from work, actually take it. Don’t remote in. Don’t check your email any more than you need to. This is your time to nourish and rejuvenate. Savor it!
- Be present. Notice when your thoughts are fixated on work, future or past events, and gently guide them back to what you are (actually) doing.
- Work out. Maybe you have time off and can hit the gym in the morning…try a new class. Or maybe, you’re away, and you get a different type of workout…like a ski slope or a 5-mile jog around a new neighborhood. Take it…your body craves movement, and you can savor the contrast between work week and holiday week.
- Touch. Massage, foot reflexology, pedicure…good old-fashioned hand-holding. The sense of touch is one to be savored.
- Feel. Journal about how you’re feeling. Tell somebody. Take a pic. But, be sure to capture it somehow. Life is more precious when you acknowledge and honor your feelings.
- Love. From the heart. Without condition or attachment. Simply because. That’s how we connect…through our heart center. Give yourself a little Heart-to-heart plank – set the intention with your whole being.
Happy Holiday Season, everyone!