2020 has been a journey (and we’re almost there)!
The way we have managed to adapt through extremely challenging times deserves a serious pat on the back! As we enter into the last month of the year and the Christmas countdown begins, it may be worth considering how we can continue to prioritise our wellness, alongside welcoming some well deserved festive fun. Hopefully the tips below will help!
December can be a stressful time. We wake up in darkness, finish work in darkness, have deadlines to meet and shopping lists to sort. It’s easy to become overwhelmed.
Although this year’s December diary might be different, chances are we’ll still be busy posting presents and getting everything prepared for the big day.
Step back and remember; rushing around with the hope to get to the end of a never ending to do list is an unmanageable task. Take it slow, be realistic and welcome rest. This could help you to get through the list of jobs with a happy, focused and more mindful outlook.
It’s been a tough one this year! We’ve had little opportunity to mix with loved ones and in many cases, spent a lot of time worrying about what’s to come. Although it’s difficult not to feel anxious at ongoing times of uncertainty, think; is your current worry in your control? Can you do anything about it? If not, try your best to let it go. Rather than spending your time feeling stressed, focus on staying in the present moment, embrace that short yet precious time with loved ones, it’s definitely well deserved.
This year has been a solid reminder of the importance of looking after our health, and one of the many things we can do to support this is prioritise the healthy functioning of our immune system. Although it’s a common phrase, we cannot actually ‘boost’ our immune system, but support its functioning through a healthy balanced diet and lifestyle. A few things to consider:
Good Gut Health
A healthy gut can contribute to a healthy functioning immune system as around 70% of our immune cells live in our gut. Because the gut and the immune system are co-dependent, it makes sense to make gut health more of a priority!
Remember, this doesn’t mean mince pies are off the menu, it’s all about the balance.
Consider ways in which you can add in colourful, fibre rich, gut nourishing foods alongside your festive favourites!
Our body needs rest – without it our immunity defenses lower.
Quality sleep helps to battle infection. Evidence suggests getting 5 hours of sleep per night or less makes us 4 times more likely to catch a cold than getting 8 hours.
Although a couple of late nights may be on the cards – be sure to prioritise a restful 8 hours and see if you feel the benefit.
Whist being mindful of those beneficial, immune supporting fruits and veggies, it’s important to take a balanced approach. Of course our diet and lifestyle choices will alter at this time of year; it’s all part of the fun! There are no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ foods. Food should not be associated with guilt or shame but enjoyed in the moment; whether you’re cracking open that box of mince pies or enjoying a few Christmas cocktails with loved ones. While I wholly encourage a healthy diet and lifestyle, life happens! Lifestyle factors and celebrations should always be considered. Don’t be too hard on yourself, keep it in context and remember; a healthy lifestyle is all about balance.
Unfortunately yet understandably, there has been a rise in levels of mental distress here in the UK this year, and because this Christmas will be different from the norm it could bring challenges for many.
Work to find the balance between prioritising those healthy routines which can help you to feel good, alongside giving yourself permission to feel your feelings and honour them. If it feels right for you, staying connected with loved ones, getting outdoors, moving your body and welcoming rest could help you to work toward a more positive mindset, even when it feels tough.
After a long and challenging year of ongoing rules and restrictions, it’s easy to feel disheartened. Practicing gratitude can be a powerful way to acknowledge the good in our lives even at difficult times. Be mindfully present in these grateful moments, this helps us to appreciate that often, even our bad days will have some good in them.
Wishing you a happy and healthy festive season!
Holistic Health Coach - Anna Whyte
The ‘Wellness with Anna’ philosophy focuses on taking a more balanced and holistic approach to health. Often, the tools needed to make a lasting change are already in your toolbox. I offer client led guidance in order to support the progress of an individual working to meet their personal wellness goals. I will not diagnose, treat or take responsibility for bringing about wellness change, but direct, listen and support development.
We work together on a journey to make health a main priority, both physically and mentally.