This time of year can put pressure on even the most equanimous of yogis and yoginis. The urgency to complete work tasks before the break; the anticipation of extended family gatherings; the financial strain from numerous gifts and multiple social events; and perhaps the looming sense that another year has passed and you haven’t achieved your 2018 goals.
Here at Byron Yoga Centre the staff have come up with a few essential hacks to help you keep your poise this holiday season:
Take extra care of yourself
Spend part of each day off the grid, preferably in nature. Even if it’s just of 10 minutes, turn off your phone, step away from your computer/family/colleagues and revitalise your energy. Being in nature is a wonderful way to recharge your vitality.
“I wash off the work day with a surf or a walk on the beach,” said Lucas our graphic designer. “When I lived in London for a year this wasn’t possible, a teacher suggested I befriend a tree! So every day I’d visit the same tree in a local park and just check in with it. I love being back in Byron Bay, but I still kind of miss my tree!”
Other ways to practice yogi self care are to up your meditation; balance your diet for your dosha (but leave some room for mood boosting treats such as dark chocolate and comfort drinks like almond milk chai); swap vinyasa for restorative asana; and download some yoga nidra or melodic mantra for a pre-bedtime ritual.
Change Your Attitude
As yogis we know that while you can’t change people and situations – you can change your attitude. Being grateful has been shown to lower cortisol levels, so re-commit to that Gratitude List (we know that most yogis have started one at some point!).
“When I find myself focusing on the negative, I like to play a game called ’It Could Be Worse’, contributed Becky. “For example, if I’m snowed under at work I tell myself the To Do List could also include some particular hideous task. This might sound pessimistic but it works for me and it usually makes me laugh!”
Nourishing your sense of humour is a sure fire way to reduce stress and increase the endorphins that fuel our wellbeing. Hang out with friends who make you laugh, pick up a book that will make you smile or check out the stand up comedy on Netflix or the cat videos on YouTube!
Lower Your Expectations!
We often expect so much from others and from ourselves that we are set up for anxiety and disappointment. Society and social media create unrealistic standards that are hard to meet and impossible to maintain. Instead of comparing yourself to Influencers, celebrities or media icons – start to set realistic goals and give yourself credit for what you achieve.
“I had a Star Chart on my fridge to reward my daughters for positive behaviour,” commented Joni. “Then I decided to add my name to the Chart. When I get five stars in a week I reward myself with an extra chunk of chocolate or glass of red wine!”