In Part 1 of this series I broke the news to you that holidays are stressful (you're welcome!) and I took you through some ways to lengthen your emotional fuse by take care of your physical self. So now that you're treating any illness, eating balanced, working out regularly, sleeping well, and avoiding cigarettes and coffee (right!?! we're all skill ninjas on that front, right!?!? good!). So this time I'm gonna give some more skills to make you more psychologically resilient. These aren't one and done, quick fix, cure all's. But, if done regularly, they can help you ride out the emotional shit storms that come around.
- Build mastery. It's hard to feel confident and grounded when everything in your day feels incomplete or stressful or too challenging. Do at least one thing a day that makes you feel confident and competent. For me, it's making my bed or playing a game of "words with friends" or checking off an errand on a to-do list.
- Practice gratitude. Studies have repeatedly proven the psychological benefits of gratitude on mood and cognition. You can write it down or say it out loud, but don't just keep it in your head. I like writing down 5-10 gratitude every morning but doing a less structured and more spontaneous practice works too.
- Breathe deeply. Breathing calms the nervous system and promotes ability to think clearly and process events and emotions. Often we go about our day on auto pilot, not breathing well. Breathing deeply roots you in the present moment. You know you're breathing deeply if you can hear the air come in and out of your nose and if you can feel your belly rise and fall with each inhalation and exhalation.
- Laugh. You don't have to, but you can. And if you can, why not!?! Laughing doesn't mean everything's ok. It simply means you're embracing the lite and fun and silly parts of life too. So watch that funny show, listen to your favorite comedian, call your funny friend, watch ridiculous YouTube videos of babies cracking up at cats falling down...Whatever it is that helps you get your laugh on, go for it!
And, if you need more help, please contact us. We'd love to support you and your family.