Today in Ireland, it’s a quiet November Thursday. I’m starting to think about virtuous mince pie recipes and considering the best tactics to ensure I eat well while celebrating this Christmas. The festive buzz is just beginning to make itself felt in my home. I reckon I have a week or so before things really hot up.

In the US today, the festive season has landed. Some of you are celebrating Thanksgiving, which can present layers of challenge if you’re facing fertility struggles.

Family you might rarely see are coming together. Questions will be asked. Answers will be given. There is no way to control the outcome or prevent careless inquisitions. If only… Wherever you are in the world, it’s likely that this time of year brings you into situations that increase stress and cause some degree of emotional turmoil.

Today, rather than make a Black Friday offer, I’m sharing some advice to help you prioritise you. It’s a gift from me to you and there are no strings or conditions attached.

thanksgiving-stress

This festive season, be selfish.

Yes, BE SELFISH. If you need to spend 2 more minutes on your own before braving the world, take those 2 minutes without apology. If you need to decline a party invite because you’re not drinking and you don’t want to answer those probing questions, don’t go! You don’t need to explain yourself, simply decline with an “I’m afraid I can’t make it that night.” Prioritise your wellbeing, your sanity, your body. BE SELFISH.

Find a Festive Buddy.

This might be your partner, best friend, Mum, sister…someone you trust, someone who knows what’s going on and you can rely on to have your back without comment or criticism. Tell your Festive Buddy what you’re worried about, tell them what you’re dreading over the next few weeks. Ask them to be there for you. Ask them to be your buffer when you need it. (I know, asking for help is HARD. Ask anyway, you might be surprised how quickly they will jump at the chance to be your rock)

Take time out.

Go for walks outside, breathe in the fresh air. Take big, deep, belly breaths that force your entire body to slow down. Smile as you breathe, even if it’s through tears. This 2 minute exercise will relax your nervous system, even if that sounds laughable.

Soften your gaze.

“What’s that now?” When you feel stress rising, imagine your peripheral vision widening and your eyes softening. Allow your eyeballs to sink deeper into your skull. Allow your vision to take in whatever is in your periphery. Notice how the little frown between your eyebrows disappears? See how you’re more inclined to soften your shoulders and take a deep breath? This will help to soften to everything around you.

Eat breakfast every day.

It’s a pretty neat trick. Simply eating a decent breakfast every day (watch out for next week’s free breakfast recipe book) helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, keeps energy levels up and helps to keep your emotions in check. #GameChanger

I’m inviting you to try out one or all of these simple suggestions. They cost nothing and might just help to get you to 2017 in one emotionally sound piece. Give yourself permission to prioritise you. Do it, without apology and tell me how it feels to take charge of your emotional wellbeing. Right now, I’m off to do more mince pie research.

 

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