Well the man in red is nearly here! Which means it is time for me to say thank you for reading and responding to my messages over the past year. I do very much appreciate your feedback and hope that I have been able to help you.
Festivities (and associated excesses) can cause our minds to worry and our bodies to suffer! We take on additional commitments with shopping, parties and the need to fit everything in, often pleasing others before ourselves! Read on for tips on training your mind how to handle any worries you may be experiencing and a pomegranate recipe to aid recovery of your body.
I encourage you all to book out time out to be in the moment, to relax and enjoy the time with friends and loved ones. Go for long walks in nature, take a pyjama day (or two) and watch movies, read the forgotten books on the shelves and put your social media to one side (I know that's hard for me too!). It's very important to take a break this time of year, to rest the mind and body, so that, in 2019 you start the year with renewed vigour and in good spirits for the challenges ahead. I will be taking my own advice and booking some time off from Thursday 20th December until Monday 7th January.
If your mind starts worrying, whether it's fear, anger or guilt, there are a number of techniques to help you respond in a positive manner. One method I teach is a mindfulness exercise called Cognitive Defusion which is the technique of becoming untangled from our thoughts in a way that gives us the ability to let go of them. This is very useful if you have a tendency to overeat when stressed. In contrast, cognitive fusion is the process of believing that our thoughts are literally true. Defusion decreases the power of thoughts over us. Imagine the intense thought is passing from your mind just like a wave in the sea. Then take a few deep breaths whilst saying 'thank you' to your mind for raising the concern. This helps your brain recognise that it has been heard by you and allows you to determine when you will think more on the topic; it allows time to dissolve the initial emotion felt and avoids an impulsive response. Over time, your brain will learn to put aside worries until you are ready.
Each morning take a few minutes to say this Reiki principle to yourself: 'just for today I will not worry'. We can become overwhelmed when we think of the holiday ahead so breaking it down into one day at a time really helps.
And remember practise makes perfect. Use these techniques daily and you will find the effectiveness increases with each attempt.
Prime your body for festivities!
This year I have been promoting good gut health and encouraging the use of polyphenols to boost our immunity and protect us from the bad bugs! Polyphenols are phytochemicals found in plant based foods that are high in antioxidants which protect our cells and boost our immune system. We need plenty of them to prevent bacteria taking hold! Pomegranates and berries are two of the best sources!
Whilst I always encourage a foundation of healthy eating whatever the time of year, Christmas may be a time for indulgence! To help recovery, here is a tonic to keep you hydrated and boost recovery from the excesses of a night out. Pomegranate juice is a great overall health tonic and tasty as well. Drink this simple smoothie before you go out and also the following day!
Extract the seeds from a pomegranate, add to the blender with half a cup of water and pulse. Put the pulp through a strainer to remove the seeds. Add a handful of mixed berries, banana, and a cup of dairy or coconut kefir (I use Biomel) to the pomegranate juice and blend again. Pour into a glass and enjoy!
Wishing you a Happy and Peaceful Christmas and Super Health in 2019!