How to Make the Holidays More Enjoyable

Episode 34 December 01, 2021 00:16:30
How to Make the Holidays More Enjoyable
Breathe In, Breathe Out with Krystal Jakosky
How to Make the Holidays More Enjoyable

Dec 01 2021 | 00:16:30


Hosted By

Krystal Jakosky

Show Notes

Whether the holidays lift your spirits and infuse you with energy or leave you feeling exhausted and ready for naptime, self-care is a must. In this week's episode of Breathe In, Breathe Out, Krystal covers the five things you can do to make the holidays more enjoyable for both sides of the coin.

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Episode Transcript

Think meditation is hard? Do me a favor: take a slow, deep breath in and now breathe out. Congratulations! You just meditated. Hi, I’m Krystal Jakosky and this is Breathe In, Breathe Out: a Weekly Mindfulness and Meditation Podcast for anyone ready to own their own shit…and find a little peace while doing it. Welcome back to Breathe In, Breathe Out. I'm Krystal Jakosky and we are deep in the holidays. A while back, some friends and I were talking about the whole discussion between happy holidays and Merry Christmas. And what do you really say? And how do you say it so that you're not offending somebody and how do you connect with people? Because realistically, when you're saying Merry Christmas, when you're saying happy holidays or happy Hanukkah, whatever it is that you are celebrating and when you express that out. Realistically, I think that what we're all saying is I wish joy for you. I wish happiness and joy for you. And I want to spread what I'm feeling right now in a positive light to you. And I think sometimes people can be offended by that because it's not necessarily their holiday and it's not necessarily their choice of expression. And yet we're all kind of saying the same thing. We're all just saying, I'm excited. We're in this space where we get to share and expand and we get to reach out a little bit. And we're thinking about somebody other than ourselves. We're thinking about so many people around us. And I think it's such a beautiful opportunity. What I ended up taking from that whole conversation was “holidays” is really just a conjunction of words. H-O-L-I is actually holy days. So when I wish somebody happy holidays, I'm actually saying every single holy day, that is being celebrated right here, right now during this time of year, any time of year, really. But we use that phrase. We use those terms, Merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, Kwanzaa. It's all in this time of year right now. So understanding that and respecting each other's beliefs. I think should come first and foremost in our hearts and our minds. And I really hope that we can all just embrace each other and say, “Hey, thanks for your well wishes. And thanks for sharing your joy and your excitement with me, because this is a moment that brings me happiness.” And I love the feeling and the energy that comes with us. We all celebrate them differently. We all have a different purpose and a different reason for the season, but the energy is largely the same. There's a good and a bad to that. You know, during this time there's more love and kindness in the air and in the same aspect, there's more stress, there's more overwhelm. There's more frustration. The higher expectations, it can all be so overwhelming. For many, the holidays are a time when your finances are stretched even tighter than they were before, because now you're buying all these gifts. There's more going out. You may be going to parties and you have to take food. Which means you gotta buy the groceries, which means you have to find the time to make whatever dish it is that you're taking to the party. The party themselves, with the extra people and the extra communicating and talking and socializing for some of us, that's just overwhelming and draining. And for others, it's this beautiful thing where it just boosts us and makes us happy, and excited to connect with even more people. This can be the one time of the year where we struggle even more with the “am I enough?” Because on top of your everyday regular stresses that keep you running around in life and overwhelmed, you have all of these new expectations for the holidays. So today I thought it might be fun to give you five ideas on either end of the spectrum that you can use for yourself. I just want to encourage you to take care of you a little bit, avoid that burnout and just acknowledge that you're a finite resource. You are You, and there's only so much of you to go around before you kind of crash. So some self-care for you in these hectic, crazy, wonderful times. First off, what do you need? And how can you support yourself? How can you get what you need so that you can survive through these times? So the first thing I want to say is perhaps setting intentions is where you need to be. What do you want to get out of this holiday season? What do you want to get out of a party? Why are you going to that party? What are your intentions in going and being there? What are your intentions with the gift that you're giving? What are your intentions with the expectations placed upon you? If you take a moment and you stop and you set an intention, it supports you in your activity. It supports you in moving forward. My intention in going to this party is to connect with several people. And then I'm going to set a boundary and say, it's okay for me to leave a little early. So my second thing is setting boundaries. There are lots of topics out there that we could end up talking about, and some of them are going to just grate on your nerves and others are going to make you so excited. Boundaries are going to help. It could be that you decide I'm not going to talk politics. This is an opportunity for me to connect with people and see how they're doing in life and know that we all love each other. And that's why we wanted to come together. And I really want to avoid the emotional charge and the upset and frustration that can come out of politics. So if that comes out, my boundary is, as soon as someone's talks about politics, I'm going to either graciously say things that I don't want to talk about this, or I'm going to excuse myself from the area or I'm going to leave. Whatever I need to do so that I can avoid this very charged, frustrating topic. Maybe it's that Irish goodbye sometimes saying goodbye is just knowing that you're going to a party that has 15, 20 people. And you have to go around and say goodbye to everyone is just too much for you. And you want to give yourself the boundary and the expectation that I do not have to do that. I get to go, I get to say hi, I get to enjoy everybody. And then I'm going to slip out because that's my boundary. I'm not going to force myself to do anything that I don't want to do. A third option. Or a third idea is instead of making tons of holiday candy recipes. If you're like me, I have a lot. I have a list of them. And every year I think I got to make this one because it's my favorite. And once I make that one it's oh, no, no, no. I got to make this one. It's oh, what about, oh, those, oh, the chocolate covered peanut butter balls or the cinnamon candy or the sugar cookies or the, I mean, like I could go down my list. And yet every year, when it comes time to buy the ingredients and find the time to make all of those recipes and all of those delicious candies that I give 90% away, it can be very overwhelming. So perhaps you make two or three of your favorites this year, instead of the five or six, you say, Nope, what are my favorites? This is what I'm going to do. Give yourself a break. You don't have to do all of that. Number four, create opportunities for one-on-one moments. This comes out of the people who are really struggling with the group activities. The people who, it just drains them to have to be in a party with all these people and all of that energy. And it's just too much social anxiety is of very, real thing and can be very difficult to navigate. So maybe somebody invites you to a party and you think I really want to spend time with you. And yet the party is a little too much for me. So perhaps you decide instead, I really don't think I'm up for being around a lot of people. Could we go out for coffee together, or I would love to treat you to lunch instead, or could we go for a walk together and connect that way? And then I'll forgo the party. What works for you? Create those opportunities that help nurture, support and sustain you in this moment. And number five, say, NO, no, no, no. If it is just too much, take it off your plate. What can you let go of? Is what you're faced with your expectation of yourself? Or is it someone else's expectation that you have taken on? I make all of those candies and I tell you every year people come and they say, oh, I absolutely love that peppermint bark that you made. Are you making it this year? And I can say, no, I'm not making that one this year. I am making my Buckeyes and I am making those little sugar bomb cookies, but I'm not making that one. I don't have to make it because somebody loves it. I don't have to do it because somebody prefers it. What works for me? How is my energy going? And am I able to give all of that out? Or do I need to back off a little bit? This is all about you. You know where you're at, you know, what you are capable of and you know, what is going to drain you and just exhaust you in these holiday seasons. You also know what's going to uplift you and what's going to help you get through them. So I encourage you to find those things that support you through this time and help you get through this season, feeling so much better than exhausted and drained. Looking at January going, would you hurry up and come? So that I can move on. There are those of us on the other end of the spectrum. Some get exhausted. Some it's just too much activity. And then others are just boosted by the activity. And they love all of the things going on. All of the parties, all of the activities, all of the gatherings and the get togethers. If you are one of those people, I applaud you. I am so excited for you. And I do have five things that I'd like to maybe ideas that you might like to enjoy, share or apply. If you are one of those people who loves the parties and you are so excited about going, perhaps you decide or offer to cook a couple of dishes. It'll take a little bit of stress off of the hostess that is making the party a reality. And it also gives you this positive place to put a little bit more of your energy in support of this fabulous gathering. My number two is, help someone help a friend wrap presents. I did this a couple of years. I absolutely loved it. I like wrapping presents. I think it is so much fun. And it's kind of just, I like looking at those packages when I'm all done and they just look so pretty and they're happy. My cousin, she loves doing the bows and the pretty stuff. And I love just getting the box just perfectly like squared and wrapped and whatnot. We go shopping, we get what we want. We're all excited about it. And then we're faced with this pile of gifts that we have to figure out how to wrap them. Cause you can't just give the gift as it is. And, uh, if you love wrapping them, if you love decorating them, perhaps that's what you decide to do to try to help somebody’s season go a little bit smoother. You just go, maybe you have a glass of wine or a cup of tea. And you wrap presents for a little while together. It's this one-on-one opportunity. And yet you get to lift their burden and you get to expend your energy in such a positive giving way. Another idea. Number three is shop for someone, whether you're acting as a personal shopper. There have been a couple of times that I've thought, you know, I really need this or this or this. And I don't know where to go. And I'll have a friend say, you know, I'm going shopping today. Is there anything you need? And I'll be able to say, well, if you see either of these while you're out and about, that would be absolutely fantastic. And it's been so wonderful because it's a gift to me. It relieves my burden a little bit, and yet they get to shop, which is their love in life. So that's one way to do it. Or maybe you have decided to pick an angel off a tree. That's what they do in my neck of the woods. They might do it differently, or other ways. But this is, there are lots of trees in different locations and they have an angel on the tree with a young person's name and age and their wishes for Christmas. And you take that angel, you go shopping and then you return the gifts to the location. And then they make sure that those kids have those gifts on Christmas day. It's just a feel good, fun way. I remember being, someone did the 12 days of Christmas for me and my kids one year. And it was just so much fun to be the recipient of these people that, that their joy and their happiness. And they would knock on the door and run. We didn't ever know who they were. I had sneaking suspicions, but it was so much fun to be on the receiving end. And it's during the holidays and you're tired and you just don't know if you can make it through another day. And then you have this little boost of energy, this little gift of love that just says, Hey, we're here. And we think you're pretty cool. So here's your 12 days of Christmas. So shop for someone. However that comes about. Number four is a simple one. A lot of us are doing online shopping right now. We are purchasing because it makes it a lot easier and we don't have to go out into the world. That means we have a lot of delivery drivers out there just trying to meet the needs of those people. Those of us who are shopping, and maybe you want to leave a little gift for your driver. Perhaps it's hand and toe warmers, those things that go in your gloves, or maybe it's mittens or earmuffs. Maybe there's some kind of boost that you can think of, to leave for these fantastic delivery drivers. That are out there day in, day out, making sure that all of the packages get where they need to go so that people can have such a wonderful holiday season. And lastly, if you have a lot of energy and you are boosted by these holiday happenings. Perhaps you want to volunteer at a food kitchen or a homeless shelter. Someplace where they really need your extra, love, your extra gift, your support, so that they can enjoy that holiday a little bit as well. I really hope that you take care of yourselves. I really hope that you stop and you evaluate and you say, what do I need right here? Do I need to give a little more because I've got so much energy or do I need to step back a little bit and take some in. Do I need to give myself permission to say no? Do I need to set some boundaries here and say, no, I'm not going to do that. What do you need to do for yourself? So that you come out of these holidays, feeling so much better connected with people and joyful in the spirit that it provides. I hope this moment of self-care and healing brought you some hope and peace. I'm @krystaljakosky on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube and I hope you check us out and follow along for more content coming soon. I look forward to being with you again, here on Breathe In, Breathe Out. Until next time, take care.

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