Ten Things To Avoid Doing Over The Festive Period
‘it’s the most wonderful time of the year’
December is here and festive season is officially on it’s way and fast approaching. As we all know, this time of year is infamously known as the time to indulge, kick your feet back, veg out, gorging and typically ‘falling off the wagon’. However, don’t let this be the go ahead to overindulge and it hit January 1st and you want to undo it all. You can absolutely still enjoy the holidays without too much change in your current routine or impact on your hard and consistent work this year.
It is easier to maintain your wellness routine over the Christmas period than starting over again in the new year, but I know the feeling of feeling frustrated not being able to stick to your regular routine so not bothering. You can still enjoy yourself, drink, eat and stay on track. It’s all about being mindful without totally overdoing it.
Before the holidays ruin your plans and hard work, carry on reading to find out my top ten things to avoid doing over the festive period but still keeping the Christmas spirit alive… no Grinches or bar humbugs here!
- Try mindful eating — sitting in front of the tv watching Christmas films mindlessly eating a tub of quality streets means you’re more likely to go through the whole tub. Your brain is unable to accurately compute how much food you’ve consumed. If you want some chocolate, a turkey sandwich or a few mince pies, sit down with no distractions, take your time and mindfully enjoy every single bite. Keep your stomach connected with your brain and your focus on fullness and satisfaction will keep control of how much you eat
- Get rid of the all-or-nothing mindset — this is definitely a mindset I can relate to from a few years ago and is a mindset trap many fall into. ‘May as well enjoy myself’, ‘It’s Christmas’, ‘I’ve already eaten everything, I’ll just carry on’ are common thoughts. The all or nothing thought process never works. It’s all about balance
- Eat till you’re full and not stuffed — listening to your body about knowing when to stop is critical. Take a smaller plate, waiting before a second serving. Just because it’s holiday season ,eating for the sake of it isn’t the way forward
- Try not to skip meals — skipping meals when you’re busy or thinking that you’ll save yourself till the big meal in the evening leads to binging on whatever you can. Your best bet is having balanced, proper food on time
- Give yourself self care— looking after yourself, eating a nutritious breakfast or lunch, having a hot bath, meditating, stretching, going on a long walk or going to a yoga class to stay well is important. Prioritise your health so that you’re feeling your best you over the festive period
- Be active in scheduling time to exercise — bypassing and postponing exercise during December can be a big mistake. We feel lazier and more lethargic due to increased alcohol, social plans and food but staying on track with exercise even a long walk getting the family involved and sticking to a some what routine will make you feel 100x better. Not only that, but with the time we have off from work, we actually have more time. Changes don’t start on Jan 1st, stay consistent now!
- Choose the food you love — at this time of year you will feel compelled to eat all the festive treats at parties, dinners, events. Only eat the foods you really enjoy instead of aimlessly walking round the Christmas table buffet eating for the sake of it
- Forgive and cut yourself slack — cut yourself some slack and show yourself some self compassion. Accept and acknowledge that you’ll be eating more indulgent food than usual and don’t feel overwhelmed
- Know that food is not the enemy — restrictions or banning foods backfires and leads to us wanting the foods that we deem as ‘bad’ or ‘unhealthy’ or ‘forbidden’. Demonising food groups, which is a lot of the food over the festive season is the way we incite and induce overeating. Tis’ the season and the mindset of ‘sometimes foods’ or ‘once a year food’ that you don’t eat every single day means that you can enjoy some delicious meals without it impacting on your health in the long run. A few days off out of 365 isn’t going to be detrimental
- Enjoy and pay attention to what really matters! — pretty self explanatory but enjoy it. It really is the best time of the year especially after the year we’ve all had so just sit back and really take it all in
Most importantly like number 10 says, enjoy the festive period, the downtime, time spent with family and loved ones and a well earned rest after a bit of a crazy year!