Why it’s so important to create space for rest, healing, and self-love during the holidays
Is it just us, or has 2022 been a doozy of a year?
There have been *so* many moments to relish in and give thanks for, yes.
But families seem to be busier and experiencing more illness than before.
There have been celebrations and outings galore, as we try to make up for what the pandemic stole.
But our immune systems have taken a knock, due to the over-sanitising and infrequent human contact of the past two years, and the after-effects of the C-bomb itself.
This combination has made slowing down ever trickier but all the more important.
Now, as we enter the silly season, we have a choice:
Buy into the hustle and bustle of holiday parties and stressful shopping expeditions.
Or settle into a slower way to Christmas – one that balances festivities and frivolity with ample down time, to repair and recharge before the new year.
Most of us only get this one opportunity a year – this extended break from work, darting through peak-hour traffic, and taxiing the kids to their extra-curriculars – this decent chunk of time to be with our families and ourselves, undisturbed by all the comings and goings that empty our cups the year through.
Below, we share our golden tips to help you slow down, nourish, and replenish this season.
Forget what you think Christmas is supposed to look like
Christmas seems to have become more about doing and buying, than being and loving.
But we’re not buying into that, and you don’t have to either.
Consumerist and capitalist culture have tried to convince us that the key to happiness is buying more.
Spoiler alert: it’s not.
Anyone else feel a little empty once all the presents are torn open within five minutes and lay carelessly strewn around the room?
All that time and money spent carefully choosing and wrapping the perfect gifts, only for the surprise and suspense to be over so suddenly.
As the parents of little ones, we all feel pressure to make each Christmas bigger and better than the last one.
Maybe it’s because we only get a few short years of our kids believing in the magic.
But what if Christmas magic hinged more on making special memories with each other, and less on Santa, reindeer and presents?
Then it would be something our babies could never outgrow.
The more things our children get, the less they seem to appreciate and look after them.
Research has found that too many toys and a cluttered environment contribute to sensory overwhelm and behavioural problems, particularly in neurodivergent kids.
Rather than leaving ourselves broke and stressed this year, trying to do and buy *all the things*, why don’t we create new traditions and leave more time for play?
The idea of swapping a stressful, overdone Christmas lunch for a picnic at the park or beach, or a cheeky little coastal getaway, sounds like heaven.
Time with us is what our kids crave more than any material gift.
This year, we’ll be investing in a handful of well-made pieces that are either educational or get the kids outside, soaking up fresh air and vitamin D, and leaving the plastic toy du jour on the shelf.
Don’t forget, this is your time, too
As mamas, so often we take on the bulk of family and household responsibilities, and this extends right through the festive season.
We juggle end of year work projects, holiday parties, Christmas shopping, travel plans, Santa visits, festive catch-ups, end of year playdates for the kids, cooking, entertaining …
It’s enough to fill the merriest mother with dread.
If you’re looking for a permission slip to say “no”, this is it!
No to another round of drinks.
No to catching up with those old friends you’re not all that close with.
No to another holiday playdate.
No to ‘just one more’ trip to the shops for a few more gifts.
No to anything and anyone that doesn’t light you up, and will only leave you stressed out, rundown and less able to enjoy Christmas day and your well-deserved holiday break.
It’s also a time to ask for exactly what you need.
Whether it’s some you-time so you can make it to yoga or meditation class, more help from your partner and family, or a voucher for a meal subscription, cleaning service, or Golden Month care package under the tree, instead of more *stuff* that you don’t have room for, and that won’t improve your quality of life.
By telling your loved ones what you really want for Christmas, you’ll be saving them a clueless outing to the shops, where they’ll jostle with crowds of people, and preventing them from wasting their money on something you might not use.
There’s nothing selfish or presumptuous about it!
The need to nourish
It is so easy to run ourselves ragged in the lead up to Christmas.
We become rundown with all the preparation and partying, overindulge a sweet tooth, down a prosecco too many and, in all the busyness, neglect to give our bodies the fuel they need to produce energy and detox all those festive treats.
Is it any wonder that Christmas bugs are all too common?
A customisable and nutrient-filled meal subscription is an easy way to ensure that you and your family can enjoy balanced nutrition in between all the outings and events, without the stress of extra grocery shopping and mustering the energy to cook.
Packed with plant-based wholefoods, and nourishing herbs and spices, our meals are made fresh and delivered to your door every week, with plenty of ‘hidden veggie’ options that the kids will love as much as you do!
Order as many serves as you need and freeze what you don’t need when last minute outings pop up.
Our kitchen will be closed between 26 December and 8 January, so it’s a good idea to order a few extras and stock up your freezer for the Christmas break, giving you plenty of wholesome, gut-friendly options when you just can’t look at another plate of leftovers.
Last words …
If you’re in your element cooking up a giant feast and going overboard on gifts, you do you.
Far be it for us to tell anyone how to Christmas!
Just don’t feel bad if you can’t or don’t want to this year, or indefinitely, because special time with our families is all that jumps out at us from our childhood Christmas memories – not gifts.
And give yourself plenty of time for rest and self-care, so you can burst into 2023, feeling healthy and full of energy.
Wishing you and your family the most magical and love-filled Christmas.
The Golden Month Team x