Being PRESENT during the Holiday Season


This is a beautiful offering written by Corrina Steward, Green Monkey Guest Blogger. As soon as I read it I couldn’t wait to feature it here. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, it’s the perfect advice for the holiday season.. Cheers!

The holiday season is one of the best times to grow your spiritual muscles. Whether it’s attending holiday parties or venturing into crowded malls, you will be challenged to find peace in the chaos. This holiday season I’ve decided that I will embrace the chaos through seven simple practices that will keep me PRESENT.

I’ve practiced yoga for nearly 10 years. One of the greatest benefits I receive from my yoga practice is the awareness of my body, mind and spirit. I know when I’m no longer living from my “center,” that grounded place where all of my energy is available for life, it can be felt as tightness in my neck or hyperactivity in my mind.

These are my indicators that I’m living in the danger zone: In the danger zone, we become aggressive toward others or feel victim to (or simply drained by) all of our obligations. This is the usual state of being for people during the holidays, which explains the crazed stampeding into stores and the anxiety over our to-do lists.

I think we could all use a PRESENT to get us through the holidays and to leave the world in better shape than it was before the holidays. Try these spiritual exercises whenever you feel like you are about to enter the danger zone.

Peace. Make peace with whatever you are struggling with. In the end, if it’s bothering you that much, peace is always the best option. Do you really need to get that one extra gift?

Reflect. When you feel yourself getting caught up in the chaos of the season, take a moment to reflect on your true values. What is the true spirit of the holidays for you? Are you living it?

Energy. How we experience the holidays often comes down to the quality of our energy. If we are feeling drained, we are simply not going to be able to enjoy things as much as we could. Make sure to rest and do pleasurable activities that build your energy.

Savor. Savor the moments. What will you remember about this holiday season? Seek out joyful, spirit-filled experiences.

Enthusiasm. Spend your time on activities that you truly feel enthusiastic about. Just because you’ve done something the same way every year doesn’t mean you have to again this year.

Nature. Be in nature. It will bring you back to reality and into a space where time slows down.

Trust. Trust that you will get through the holidays remembering the joyful moments and forgetting the challenging ones. Trust that you will make someone happy with your contributions and the things you did not do will not matter.

Lastly, be PRESENT. Experience the moment you are in rather than thinking about the next. Not only will you feel calmer, others will notice your lightness of being. Spreading the light is the best present you could give to yourself and the world.