How do you want to feel this holiday season? Conscious Holiday Tips To Honor Your Desires

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Two years ago, I decided I was done feeling sick and rundown on Christmas.

I was done giving in to what others wanted and I was ready to honor my desires not just throughout the holiday season, but also going into the new year.

So I sat down and thought about what I wanted to feel instead.

I wanted to feel healthy, energized and connected - to myself and to others.

Just having this shift in awareness helped me feel more abundant, but I knew I needed to get even more clear. I went deeper and made a list of what could help me feel healthy, energized and connected.

I came up with the following:

  • Organic whole foods - lots of delicious greens, roasted vegetables, fresh fruit and more.

  • Regular check-ins / time to talk one-on-one with my partner.

  • Downtime to rest and feel in connection with both myself and my partner.

  • Maintaining my home workouts and meditations.

I also became aware of what was not always in alignment with these feelings:

  • Lengthy holiday travel kept me from downtime at home.

  • Too many holiday parties left me feeling depleted and disconnected.

  • Sugar and all the related sugary foods made me feel both jittery and sluggish.

I then took all this valuable insight to my partner and shared my intention to do the holidays a bit differently.

He is a sweetheart and was more than happy to join me! He also knows that my abundance and happiness helps him feel abundant and happy. Win win.

We researched new recipes and replacement food options that still felt indulgent and special but honored our health goals. This included dark chocolate only sweetened with honey, Brussels sprouts with salami, sweet potatoes without any added sugar, and a whole lot of organic kale salad.

We also took a look at the calendar and gave ourselves permission to travel for less time and opt-out of certain gatherings.

Last, but not least, we made a vow to check-in each night while traveling to make sure we were on the same page and had a debrief of the day.

Overall we entered the holiday feeling clear, conscious and with our values and intentions at the forefront.

It was absolutely awesome and incredibly successful.

When last year rolled around, we maintained much of the same intentions, but we also decided to opt-out of gift giving - suggested by another family member who wanted to prioritize one of their desires of maintaining financial abundance through the holidays!

We still woke up before dawn to light candles - one of my favorite traditions - but instead of sharing gifts, we shared stories.

It was heavenly.

This year, after spending a good amount of time with family and traveling over the summer and fall, we’ve decided to spend our first Christmas married with just each other in NYC.

We’ll still maintain the traditions we love - and our continued intentions from previous years - but it’ll be our first Christmas holiday without any travel.

Now next year we may want to go on an adventure again, but it’s exciting, satisfying and deliciously abundant to know that we get to decide.

Every year we get to evaluate our lives and make holiday choices that support our well being inside and out.

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Now, you may be thinking, that’s great for you, but my family wouldn’t let me do that.

The truth is that not everyone was immediately excited about each of our holiday decisions, but it has opened the door for other family members to honor their desires, too.

For example, the no gifts idea I mentioned from last year came from another family member who may have never felt safe asking for such a thing had we not already set the stage by honoring what was best for us.

In short, you never know until you take the leap!

When we give ourselves permission to do things differently, everyone benefits.

In fact, you might have a handful of family members right now who are thinking the same thoughts you are, wanting things to change, but too afraid to speak up.

In my experience, only good things come when you honor what is best for you. Below are a few tips to make it easier.

#1 - Get clear and prioritize.

Clarity is power, so whether it’s just you making these choices or you and a partner, you have to sit down and think about what you want to FEEL. Not anyone else’s expectations or the list of what you’ve always done, but really considering which parts of the holiday make your heart sing and which make you feel uncomfortable, stressed or disconnected.

#2 - Maintain your favorites.

Whatever traditions feel magical and make your heart, body and soul delight stay on the list! For me this includes lighting candles, taking walks through holiday markets, decorating our home, playing holiday music and watching cheesy holiday romantic comedies.

#3 - Find abundant substitutes.

This is not about depriving yourself or cutting yourself off from your family and your traditions. This is about choosing foods and activities that nourish on every level. You can be still be indulgent and extravagant in the ways that feel like an aligned YES.

#4 - Give others a heads up.

Let people know ahead of time and allow them to opt in or out. This is important. Two years ago we were visiting Ballard’s family and last year we were visiting mine. In both cases we called ahead and let them know our new intentions and asked if they would be interested in joining us. In both cases it opened up a door for everyone to give themselves a bit more permission to put their desires at the forefront - meaning everyone got a bit more conscious and chose what was best for them!

I would love to know how this goes for you!!

Tell me in the comments if you’ve already made some changes to your holiday traditions to better honor your energy or if this is the invitation you’ve been waiting for.

And if you are looking to continue this practice of abundance into the New Year, then I’d be honored to have you in my Abundant Living online course.