You know there will be an abundance of food and drink at every event you attend this month! Before you arrive, make a plan of how you are going to deal this. There are many strategies to choose from. (6 Tips to Survive the 'Eating' Season) Pick one that suits your situation, your personality, and your personal goals. Remember to leave the guilt at home!
Board games and card games are a great way to bring people of all ages together in a casual, relaxed way. They can provide the gathering with a focal point and move the emphasis away from the food table. There is also something magical about hearing the laughter that comes from these fun, spontaneous interactions.
Include physical activity into your schedule this month. Staying active will help relieve stress and help burn those extra calories you consume. (Don't kid yourself -- you WILL consume more calories!) Plan a family outing -- walk the neighbourhood to see the Christmas lights, go ice skating, or even go for a swim! Any of these activities can be another opportunity to connect with others. (Why wait till January? Get active NOW - 5 UBER steps to get you started)
Long line-ups at the cashier, heavy traffic, and other seasonal annoyances are better dealt with when you are feeling refreshed! A good nights sleep will also keep your appetite regulating hormones (ghrelin + leptin) in check, helping you to resist the urge to overeat. If you are having difficulty getting to sleep, try pilates, yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises to clear your mind and relax your body.
Though most of the conversations around the holiday season are centered around great feelilngs and happy times, not everyone shares in the festive mood. Loneliness, saddness, and depression can make it difficult for many people. If you are finding it difficult to get through the holiday season, find a good friend or, if needed, a health professional, to confide in. If you suspect someone you know is struggling, offer a lending hand or a listening ear! Giving someone your time and undivided attention is one of the best gifts of all.