As the busiest few weeks of the holiday season begin, here are a few tips to keep in mind for a peaceful holiday season.
Spot the triggers. Triggers are the things that can impact thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. It is extremely helpful to understand triggers so that there is an understanding of the reason behind particular thoughts and feelings. Triggers may be a particular family member where there is constant comparison, crowded rooms, or spaces where loved ones used to be.
Cope ahead. Expect the unexpected (burnt cookies, unplanned guests, forgotten gifts). Prepare to cope with positive affirmations. Have a few of these affirmations printed and ready to help cope with unexpected interruptions. Also, expect to encounter triggers. Make plans to use coping skills to alleviate the stress of these triggers. Here is a reminder of various coping skills available.
Practice gratitude. Amongst the busyness, the stressors, the triggers - work diligently and intentionally to focus on the positive things. Before going to bed each night, record five things that inspired gratitude that day.
Practice self-compassion. Be sure to take a step back and reflect on kindness towards self. This is a difficult task but implementing small acts of self-compassion can ensure stability in wellness. Self-compassion may lead to intentional prioritizing, keeping things simple, limiting expectations, saying no, and protecting self-care. Check this link for other ways to implement self-compassion a daily basis.
From KS Services, we wish you the Merriest of Christmases. In a year like no other, remember that “the weary world rejoices.”
Laura Waller, MS
Laura would like to thank Lauran Thomas, Director and Clinical Supervisor of KS Services, for providing inspiration for this blog post.