How to Deal with Holiday Stress

Holiday Spirit From the Inside OutWhy are the holidays supposed to be so wonderful, but sometimes they just feel like a lot of work?
Our culture puts a ton of focus on getting the holidays just right in order to experience the holiday spirit—having the perfect decorations, the perfect ingredients for your meal, the perfect gift, following your traditions perfectly, connecting with relatives in the perfect way.  The promise is that if we orchestrate sparkly holidays, we’ll be enveloped in the holiday spirit. 
I’m here to tell you that peace, love, gratitude, joy, and your connection to the miraculous does not come from those things. 
At first that might seem annoying—you mean I can’t solve my holiday blues by organizing them away?
And then it becomes a relief.  You mean I can be separated from loved ones and still feel connection?  I can experience joy even if I don’t have enough money to buy all the fancy gifts that catch my eye?  Things can go awry with the New Year’s meal and we can still have a good experience?  I can get stuck in holiday travel traffic and still appreciate my connection to the miraculous?
I’m also going to tell you something kind of amazing—holiday spirit comes from inside of you and it’s with you always, all year long, in every moment, no matter what is going on around you.  It just gets covered up with our busy thinking.  That’s why I’ve designed this mind experiment to help you find out what arises when you make space for a quiet mind.
Mind experiment:  Give yourself space for a quiet mind and see what feelings arise.  Over the next few weeks, in between your busy plans, take some time to find out what helps you experience having a quieter mind. 
The problem with trying to figure out what helps you experience a quiet mind, is that you can end up doing a lot of thinking about it.  You may see how busy your mind is while you’re trying to figure out how to have a quiet mind.  That’s why it’s best to experiment.  I’ll help you out by pointing you in a few directions to try:
Making room for a quiet mind might look like:

  • Getting up when your alarm rings and enjoying a glass of water rather than hitting the snooze button and calculating when you really need to get up.
  • Choosing to not take your phone in the bathroom with you to scroll the internet.
  • Taking 30 seconds to breath when you sit down at your desk to start your day.
  • Going for a 5 minute walk after lunch (when it’s not raining).
  • Not listening to the radio or talking on the phone on your drive home.
  • Not listening to a podcast or watching TV while you are working out.
  • Setting aside a few minutes to sit still in your yard/patio/outdoor space.

What making room for a quiet mind will NOT look like:

  • Trying to control your thinking.
  • Judging yourself for having such a busy mind.
  • Telling yourself you’re doing it wrong.
  • Adding more to your list of what to think about.

You see the secret to having a quiet mind is simply leaving a bit of space for you to experience it.  The quiet and stillness in your mind are always there, we just normally fill up the space before we get to experience it.  In order to experience more of it, you can stop trying so hard and experience what’s already there.  When you touch this space in yourself, beautiful feelings of peace, love, gratitude, joy, and an appreciation of the miraculous arise effortlessly. 
Try it out and let me know how it goes.  I’d love to know what is going on or what you did when you are overcome with the holiday spirit in the next few week.  I’m willing to bet it will be hard to put your finger on what caused these beautiful feelings, because it’s more likely that they arose from within you when there was space for them.

If this resonates with you. make sure to check out our upcoming Resiliency 101 Workshop, where we explore state of mind, thinking, moods, and behavior.   I think we’re better off learning about how we create our experience so we can connect to love and understanding in all kinds of circumstances, rather than planning out all the details and “plan Bs” in hopes that we can orchestrate a good feeling at the holidays.

The Last Workshop for 2019Better join us now, because December and January are the last 2 times I'm holding the Resiliency 101 workshops for a while.  I'm going to take break next February and March to come up with a refresh for the workshops.  Plus the end and start of the year are a great time for some self reflection.  The world needs you to connect with your best you and get out there and do your thing. Whether your thing is:

  • Taking care of your family and making the holidays all about love and connection.
  • Contributing to support and relief efforts for those less fortunate than you.
  • Finding more creativity and purpose in your work as you close out the end of the year.

It all starts with less chronic stressful thinking and more connecting with your innate spark.

Click the link below to get more information and save your seat now:

Resiliency 101–The Art and Science of Thriving
Tuesday, December 10th, 6-7 PM

Thrive Acupuncture and Wellness


Sound Healing by Jules If you’ve been in the office in the last month and a half you’ve met our new office manager Jules Sears.  While it’s obvious that she’s great at all things acupuncture office related (she’s been managing acupuncture offices for over 10 years) you might not know that she’s an amazing sound healer.  We’re planning for you to able to experience her work in our office, but in the meantime she has a workshop coming up in Santa Rosa.  Click the link for more information and to register to hold your space:

Healing Sounds for Holiday Overwhelm
Thursday, December 26th, 7-9:30 PM

Lomitas Center


Insurance & Flex Spending AccountsIf you are going to have Blue Shield in 2020:  Click this link and check out this information.  There are some big changes coming that might affect your ability to use your insurance in our office and we're trying to help all our patients get informed ahead of time.

Now is the time to use up your 2019 insurance benefits.  Get in touch if you have any questions about how many treatments you have left. 

Now is also the time for many to use up their Flex Spending allowance for 2019.

We're booking appointments through December 23rd.  The end of the year tends to be a busy time in the office so hop online now and use our online scheduler or get in touch and we'll help you find appointments that work for you.

What We’re Treating in the ClinicThe delayed dampness meant delayed fall allergies and a delayed start to cold and flu season, but the dampness and its effect on our respiratory systems is here now.  The good news is that the style of acupuncture I do is renowned for instant help with allergy, cold, and flu symptoms.  And it’s just as effective for prevention.  Having overcome a week respiratory system myself, I have all sorts of tips for herbs and self care too.  Get on in here through December 23rd and we’ll help you stay healthy through this busy social time of year!
Existing patients can book online here Make sure you get a confirmation email and click "CONFIRM" in that email. 

You can access our online booking anytime by clicking anywhere on our website that says "make an appointment" or "book now" and follow the breadcrumbs to "Existing Patients" and "Book Online".  Existing patients are always welcome to call or email us if you prefer to schedule that way or you’re not finding any appointments that work for you online. 

New patients need to call or email us to set up their first appointment because there is just too much information we need to share with you.

Happy Quiet Mind Explorations!
Christina Ness-Hawks, LAc

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