Thanksgiving week can be one of the most extraordinarily enjoyable times of the year or it can lead to incredible stress. The food, friends, family, and fellowship of the gatherings are often some of the greatest times of our life and create some of the best memories. There are some countervailing forces as well. There is the travel, family tension, food disasters, social anxiety, and for some the loneliness. What can be even worse is the empty seat at the table when you have lost someone near and dear to you.
So I wanted to look at some quick tips to boost our Spiritual wellness for the coming week.
• Let’s not do things just because we “should.” Make this time of year intentional. Ask yourself, “Do I really want to spend time doing this? Is this something that improves my thankfulness and gratitude? What can I do to make this holiday better and bring more meaning?” Let’s give ourselves permission to create a new tradition or revise old routines. All traditions have to start somewhere. So maybe this year will be the year to volunteer to help the less fortunate have a good Thanksgiving. On the other hand maybe this is the year for us to stay home and just rest because we are worn out.
• Let’s be very clear about what we have as a our priority. Know what is important. We won’t be overwhelmed when we say no to activities that are not a priority or we simply do not have time to do. We can’t do everything. If we have a priority for spiritual wellbeing then make time for worship, meditation, and prayer. As we eat our Thanksgiving meal, let’s take some time to eat slowly and really give thanks for what we have. Enjoy the meal don’t just snarf it down and pile some more on.
• Let’s take good care of ourselves. We are no good to anyone else if we don’t take care of ourselves. We will nourish ourselves emotionally, physically, and spiritually. It will help us through Thanksgiving and Christmas. You can’t give when your own cup is empty. Let’s choose some relaxing activities: sit and read for thirty minutes, take an extra long shower, find and quiet coffee shop to sit and just look out the window doing nothing. We need to listen to our bodies. We are usually not very good at this and that gets us in trouble. Sleep is one of those areas lots of us neglect. So make that a part of the routine of wellness.
Tomorrow I’ll share a few more ideas.
“In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8