Do you ever feel a little down this time of year? A couple of weeks ago we started feeling a mix of complex emotions while trying to get into the holiday spirit to shoot one of our holiday themed outfits for the blog. What could this mix of longing, nostalgia and expectation mean? Were the dreaded holiday blues taking hold?
The four weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas are brimming with images, songs, and cultural messages of happy families filled with love for each other, romantic couples getting engaged, and a surplus of amazing, brightly wrapped gifts. These images bring so much expectation of the perfect life, and reality is often vastly different. Valentina is far away from her family in London and Francesca recently experienced a major heartbreak, so where does that leave our glass of eggnog – half empty or half full? If you are experiencing any symptoms of holiday withdrawal, read on! While we can’t ever create a perfect life, we can certainly take advantage of our creativity and resources to recapture the joy! We decided to take a trip to the magical Fairmont Hotel on Nob Hill to pamper ourselves, enjoy the enchanting two-story giant Gingerbread House in the hotel’s Grand lobby, and wear our favorite holiday #OOTD – pajamas of course!
1. Feel the feelings!
Don’t run away from them or drown them in the Christmas punch. The holidays can be a lovely break from routine, and an opportunity to have space and time to think and relax. Take some time to yourself to quietly reflect on your feelings. Track those feelings over a cup of tea or take the time to meditate! The power of introspection and taking a closer look at what those feelings are trying to tell you can be very powerful. Holidays sometimes become the anniversary for remembering the losses we have sustained. The flip side of seeing all the smiling faces around the table is the painful awareness of those who are missing. We also recommend watching the movie “Inside Out” about the role emotions play in the brain. The characters Sadness and Anger both have very important roles and are just as valuable as Joy.
2. Be your own champion!
Don’t let your inner critic take the lead! Be careful of self-critical thoughts that tend to crop up during the holiday season and end of the year. “You don’t even have a date for this party. You are just going to wind up alone.” Get to know your inner critic and nip it in the bud when it starts to act out! Identify this voice as your insecurities and act against its sabotaging directives. If it lures you to isolate yourself with thoughts like “You’re better off alone. No one wants you around anyway,” push yourself to seek out friends for a laugh! By challenging your inner voice you are actively taking a loving attitude toward yourself.
Take a new class that gets your body moving and raises endorphins! We love trying new work out classes, especially if they involve good music and dancing. Dance is a simple way to feel the joy and gratitude of having a body that can move. Dancing is a form of movement that takes you out of your head and back into the moment. Plus it’s a great way to stay in shape and feel good about your body.
4. Pamper yourself!
Be your own Santa and treat yourself to that massage or facial you have been waiting for. Take yourself out to the movies and sip on some hot cocoa or read that book you haven’t made time for. Yes, do embrace your materialistic side and get those fun pair of heels or new red lipstick that will encourage you to go out with friends and feel your best! We decided to treat ourselves by having a gingerbread house sleepover extravaganza at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco.
5. Maintain your balance!
Sometimes all the obligations, events and commitments can be truly overwhelming. Write out a design plan of your “holiday-of-choice” and make sure you say no to the activities that are not serving you. It is important to engage in activities that make you feel in touch with your true self.