The holidays are a time of year filled with all kinds of wonderful emotions but also some non-wonderful ones, such as stress. Whatever holiday you may celebrate, for many of us it can at times feel overwhelming to try to balance visiting, entertaining, eating, drinking, shopping and all sorts of errand running with the true spirit of the holidays, such as spreading kindness, spending meaningful time with loved ones and reflecting on all that we are grateful for. In fact, for some, the holidays can end up being a blur of busyness with all sense of the real meaning of this special time of year lost in the shuffle.
With the holidays quickly approaching, we wanted to take time to remind you of the yogic path of Madhyama Marga – or The Middle Way – to help you consciously strike a healthy holiday balance this year and return to the true intentions of the season. Madhyama Marga teaches us to avoid the extremes of over indulgence and intense restriction in order to find joy in the evenness and balance of life. When you apply this teaching to the holiday season you see that you can consciously craft a beautifully balanced time of year for you and your loved ones that allows you to appreciate the joys of the season while avoiding the pitfalls of overdoing it.
So, instead of feeling the pressure to say yes to all the holiday invitations, spend a couple of quiet nights at home in front of the fire with a good book to recharge. Or, instead of being stressed about hosting the perfect holiday party, think about how you can spend quality time with the people you love to make lasting memories.
And when gifting this holiday season, consciously spend and/or give to those you care about from a place of love by practicing mindful gifting. Set a budget that is right for you and stick to it so that you don’t overspend and stimulate a stress response (remember, gifting should feel good!). Consider gifting differently this year to increase the feel good hormones, maybe through a donation, making something yourself or shopping locally. Or consider sharing the gift of Swastha (vibrant health; being fully rooted in oneself) by gifting something from our holiday shop.