Choosing peace over panic
In winter, plants rest, animals hibernate and the natural world is forced to slow down by shorter daylight hours. Humans, on the other hand, are often at odds with this natural rhythm. The holidays and new year spur activity, celebration — and added stress. Taking time to reevaluate and refocus one’s time spent during these months can help reduce that stress for families.
If there is anything that the last two years has taught us, it’s that what once seemed import-ant may no longer be a priority. Take a moment this holiday to carefully consider how your family spends its time, energy and resources. You might find that new traditions are more meaningful and better for everyone’s mental health. Some ways you might reinvent your holidays...
Give back. There are families struggling in our communities, and being charitable can help put into perspective individual fortune. Find a charity or cause that speaks to your personal interests and get involved through donation or good works. Involve children in meaningful ways. For example, help them pick out gifts to donate to children their own age and explain the reasons for doing so.
Volunteer. Donate your time and talent to a worthy cause that interests you, such as an animal shelter or a soup kitchen. Modeling this behavior for children — and letting them participate when appropriate — helps create a new generation of philanthropy and community involvement.
Cut back. Consider reducing the number of holiday gifts that you give or receive. Let others in your family off the hook, too. Carefully consider where a gift will be in six months after receipt: If you don’t think someone will still be enjoying it, take a pass. If someone in your life really wants to get you something, suggest a donation in your name to one of your favorite charities.
Say no. It’s okay to decline a party invitation and choose rest or family time instead. Watch an old favorite holiday movie together, make a family favorite dish or break out a puzzle.
Nature slows down in winter, and so can you. Here’s to a peaceful, healthy holiday!
Brought to you by: santiamhospital.org