Advice Off the Mat Yoga

5 Ways to Keep a Meditation Practice During the Holidays

So, you’ve been doing a great job lately, meditating every day. You are proud of yourself. You want to keep going. You have the motivation (most of the time). And then, it’s December! Meaning, in many cases, absolute lack of routine. Family gatherings, so many other things to focus on, possibly some travelling, staying away from home, and then lastly, the official time of slacking off, sleeping in and eating a lot of chocolate.

It’s the time were doing things for yourself can be a big challenge.

It’s the time were all habits go to die.

So, to avoid the devastating lack of routine and meditation during the holidays (let’s pretend that it would actually be this dramatic, for the sake of my argument) and a very difficult time getting your habit back after the holidays (self-discipline and other factor will influence if you get your habit back in January, or July), I have a few ways for you to keep your meditation practice (or if you’re a daredevil, start it) during the holidays.

Of course, there will be some that will have no difficulty keeping their routine during the holidays. This article is written for the struggling others. So, what to do?

Wake up earlier

Aren’t you one of those people that absolutely loves reading it again and again, how waking up earlier is the solution to all your problems? And yet, you watched Christmas movies for way too long last night, and are barely crawling out of bed before lunch? (let’s call it brunch though, for good measure).

Well, especially if you are enjoying the holidays with extended family, waking up a little bit before them would give you some needed alone time, and enough time for a short meditation.

And, if waking up earlier is impossible, staying awake a bit longer than the others might also work for that purpose.

Meditate while others sleep. Whichever end of the day you choose.

Keep your expectations low

When squeezing the meditation in, do simply enough. Meditate for as long as you need and want, and instead of pushing yourself to meditate for as long as you used to do before the holidays, do half.

Walk quietly into a room, close the door behind you, and sit down with your eyes closed for a few minutes. And if that isn’t an option, sit down in the living room, even with people around you, close your eyes, and take a deep breath. Maybe with headphones, listening to some music or meditation, or just listening to the chatter around you, putting a smile on your face, being grateful for the wonderful people you have in your life.

If needed, walk it out

Go for a walk, get some space and some fresh air. Maybe, find a bench or a stone to sit down on, close your eyes for a moment and take a few breaths. Or simply stand in a lovely place and enjoy the view. Use the chance to get your alone time in and re-energize, before heading back with a smile on your face, ready for some more family time.

And if all fails…

…and you are actually just trying to keep your meditation going to keep your streak on your meditation app, do a relaxation before bed, and count it as meditation (just make sure that you do this before midnight, so it actually counts as today´s meditation!).

I swear, it’s totally allowed! And you might even start to sleep much better than before!

Lastly, be kind to yourself.

Whatever happens, you will be okay. You are in this for the long run. You will be working on your habits and becoming a better you every single day, for as long as you live. You have plenty of time.

So, if for any reason, you skip meditation completely for the remainder of this year (and the whole of next year), you are still enough and doing the best you can.

Be kind to yourself and believe you are enough.

Meditating or not, you are exactly the way you are supposed to be, right here, right now.

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