Christmas time is one of the most stressful times of the year. There are expectations and obligations galore and sometimes this means that the joy of the festive season and catching up with friends and family can be draining. You’ve got a to do list a mile long, Christmas lunch to prepare, travel with the kids, relatives to entertain, the list goes on. Incorporating yoga and meditation into your festivities is going to make everything that little bit easier. Here are some reasons why yoga is the best gift this holiday season and will help you get through it without being exhausted!
1) Yoga helps you sleep better
Remember that to do list a thousand items long? That probably plays on your mind when you are trying to go to sleep. Yoga and Pranayama help to soothe the nervous system. Yoga combined with meditation is especially powerful to quieten the chatter in your mind. So if a racing mind is what keeps you from getting a good night’s sleep then performing yoga at any point during the day may offer you some relief. Love yoga but hate meditating? Have you tried an app such as Insight Timer? This will lead you through a guided meditation and assist in relaxing you and calming your mind.
2) Yoga gives you more energy
Studies have indicated that yoga can balance the hormone cortisol (the stress hormone!). Too much and you’ll be anxious, too little and you’ll have no energy. Yoga also encourages deeper breathing, providing fresh oxygen to your blood stream, energising you. More energy = the ability to handle a manic family Christmas lunch.
3) Yoga improves digestion
Eaten too many serves of Christmas Pavlova? Don’t beat yourself up. Yoga can aid digestion. We often let physical activity go on the backburner during the Christmas period but committing to just twenty minutes of yoga a day will massage your organs and work wonders on your intestinal muscles, meaning you will have less discomfort from all the rich food.
4) Yoga and meditation bring self acceptance and helps you be present in the moment
Feel stressed? Stop. Breathe. All you have is this moment. Christmas is a time for the creation of special memories with friends and family. Don’t let that slip past you. Enjoy yourself, be present and enjoy the moment.
When you surrender to what is and become so fully present, the past ceases to have any power. The realm of Being, which had been obscured by the mind, then opens up. Suddenly, a great stillness arises within you, an unfathomable sense of peace. And within that peace there is great joy. And within that joy there is love. And at the innermost core there is the sacred, the immeasurable, that which cannot be named.
– Eckhart Tolle
Here are some gift ideas to encourage your family and friends to give yoga a go and reap the benefits over the festive season (psst we will also gift wrap them for you!):