Turkeys have been eaten, dreidels have been spun and kinara candles have started to be lit.
By now, many of the holiday festivities have come and gone. Many of us are now setting our sights on the upcoming new year. Before this happens however, we think it is important to take a few moments to reflect first.
Reflect not only on the year as a whole, but also on the holidays in particular, and how things can be adjusted for 2019.
To assist you, we have compiled a list of 5 questions that you may ask yourself.
Did you indulge a bit more than you may have wanted to?
Are you feeling sluggish, bloated or mentally drained after a few too many days of indulging? That’s okay, you’re likely not the only one. While this is the season to unwind and treat yourself, eventually we must all return to our normal routines.
Remember, it will not serve you any good to punish yourself for the choices you made. Instead, set your sights on what you can do now to help you get back on your feet.
One such option is to heal your gut. Your gut and brain have a very strong relationship: when one is having a bad day, it is likely that so is the other.
Probiotics are one way to help heal your gut. While you can purchase probiotics in capsule form, did you know there are several foods that are naturally high in probiotics? By introducing these foods into your diet, you can start healing your gut today. Fermented foods and drinks are excellent sources of probiotics, including kimchi, kafir, sauerkraut, and kombucha.
Not quite ready to introduce these strong flavoured foods? Try Hawthorn Berry Tea, which has been suggested to improve metabolism, improve energy and remove “gunk” that sticks to our intestines over the years. It is recommended that you drink this tea after a meal. 1
Is there any part of the holidays you would want to change next year?
Holiday traditions. While they can be great, this may not always be the case. In fact, some traditions may be detrimental to your mental health journey, making you feel anxious or uncomfortable.
Take a minute to reflect on the holiday traditions in your life.
Do any of them evoke any form of negative emotion? If so, take some time to write down why. It is important to do so while these emotions are still fresh in your mind. If you can, try and pinpoint what it is about these traditions that makes you feel negativity. Then, brainstorm ways you can adjust these traditions to suit your needs. Or, it is okay to break the tradition completely. I know this may sound difficult, but remember…just because you have done something many times before, doesn’t mean you have to continue doing it if you don’t enjoy it. Have fun making new traditions!
Did you stay off social media the best you could?
Have you ever noticed that social media rarely captures the negative moments in people’s lives? Instead it’s filled with our top moments…our “best self”. Comparing our behind-the scenes reality to someone’s highlight reel can have a negative impact on your self-esteem and mental health.
This can be a lonely path.
This can be even further accentuated during the holidays. While it’s nice to see everyone’s family traditions and memories, it’s easy to get too caught up in what everyone else is doing. Instead, turn off your phone and be present in the moment. Make your own memories and reconnect with the real world. When you do find yourself scrolling instagram, make a point to stop. Reflect on your memories and the feelings they evoke. If you aren't already, smile. It might just brighten your day.
Have you started thinking about goals for 2019?
2019 is fast approaching. Goal making can be overwhelming, and if done improperly can lead to disappointment. This is why we are suggesting you set aside some time now to really think about your goals. Be specific, and most of all, be kind to yourself. Do not set goals you know you won’t reach.
Try to think outside the box. Instead of focusing on something external (ie. losing 5lbs), think about an internal goal (ie. self-care) that will help you achieve this external goal. Start with micro-goals. Small milestones you can track on your way to your larger goal. Now, layout all the different steps you want to take to achieve said goal. For instance, perhaps you want to join a gym, learn to cook new healthier foods for yourself, and learn proper recovery techniques (ie. yoga, meditation, etc.).
When you approach goal making in this way, not only do you get to celebrate small goals as you achieve them, but you are also focusing on healing yourself from the inside out.
Are you holding on to negativities from 2018?
Lastly…and perhaps most importantly, let go. The past is now the past. Let go of any bad choices you may have made, or goals you did not reach. Instead, use this energy to motivate you to set your sights on 2019.