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The holidays can be a whirlwind of activity. With the presents to buy, parties to attend, and family members coming to visit, you may feel like you're on a see-saw - one minute you're up, the next you're overwhelmed and overcommitted. So how can you enjoy this season of light with less stress and more joy?

Healthy Boundaries!

If someone stands to close to you, you move away instinctively. But if your sister asks you to bake three pies for a holiday dinner, you might have a hard time saying No. Without healthy boundaries, though, the holiday season will leave you drained. So here are some suggestions for keeping healthy boundaries during the holiday season.

1. Learn to say no without feeling guilty.

 

This isn't easy.....Period. But...... it gets easier with practice. Here are three insights that make it easier to say.......No:

 

First, know that sometimes it's the "season" for Yes, and sometimes it's the "season" for No. Just because you want to say No to the pies (or volunteering to be the class mom or taking your mom shopping) this year, doesn't mean you're saying no forever. There are seasons of your life when you can do more for others and seasons when you can't, so cut yourself some slack.

 

Second, if you know you're going to say No, offer an option along with it.

For example, this year when your sister asks you to make the pies, offer to pick up baked goods from the gourmet bakery in town that she loves. 

 

Finally, get in touch with what is most important to you. Is it more important to spend time with your family than having a clean house? Is it important to carry on long-standing traditions (the pies!) or to start new ones? Is starting the New Year without a lot of debt more important than buying more gifts? Once you know what you value most, it's much easier to say......No.

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2. Know your limitations.

 

If you're like most women, you give even when you're depleted. You might also think you're superwoman - or supposed to be superwoman - and that you have to push through, even to the point of exhaustion, or take on one more task, even though it drains you.

 

When it comes to boundaries, it's important to be aware of and respect your limitations. Sure, there are times when you have to tackle something important even though you're tired. But structure your days during the holidays so that you have time to rest and restore, too.

 

3. Pay attention to your energetic boundaries.

 

We all have a life force, a subtle energy that surrounds our beings, often called an aura. This aura, which is invisible to most people, extends past your physical body and can be sensed by others. That's why, if you're spending time with a cherished loved one, you feel energized, and when spending time with "Debbie downer," you feel drained. 

 

Although you may not be able to see it, every one of your friends and family members has an aura. And if you're sensitive to how others feel, you're more likely to pick up on their energy. 

 

To protect yourself from negative energy,

do a visualization before heading to an event. 

  1. Close your eyes. Visualize your aura as an egg-shaped light that surrounds your body.
  2. Picture this egg as a white, energetic life force that is a few feet above your head and all around your body, with the small part of the egg deep in the earth. 
  3. Your aura should appear whole, with light surrounding you. If the light doesn't surround you entirely, notice where your aura is "open" or has a "hole". These holes make it possible for another's energy to permeate your aura, which is how you pick up on how others are feeling. 
  4. If there are any holes, picture any negative feelings from others leaving your aura. 
  5. Next, imagine closing these openings by filling in light wherever your aura isn't complete, while at the same time, allowing your aura to be open to receive exalted emotions like joy, pleasure, and love.

Between eating more sugar, rushing to family events, and spending money, the holidays can be a stressful time.

But it doesn't have to be!

This season, practice creating healthier boundaries by saying no, knowing your limitations, and protecting your aura. 

 

If you have other suggestions for creating healthy boundaries, please leave them in the comment section below.