Pillar 1 - Presence & Mindfulness Pillar 5 - Creator’s mindset

How to avoid the dark side of Xmas

The holiday season always comes with a range of little traps and hidden challenges.


Small yet dangerous traps for our wellbeing and happiness.

Here are the most common traps that the month of December sets up for us:

❄️ days get cold, gloomy, short, and dark – welcome to winter and winter blues 

🏃we feel rushed and overwhelmed with gift shopping, house cleaning, cake baking, and all the work things we wish to finish by end of the year

🎄 we feel obliged to spend time at family events that we don’t necessarily enjoy – or we do enjoy, but they also stress us out 

🍰 we eat too much – perhaps cause of Xmas dinners and all the parties, perhaps because of all-present cakes, or because of the dark, gloomy days…

💸 instead of a spirit of Xmas, what comes forward is the spirit of capitalism – all about the materialistic side of it: shops full of Xmas stuff already since early November make the season too stretched and watered down, ecology is on nobody’s mind, and it all gets way too full of pressure – and if you are not a fan of Xmas decorations, lights and always the same songs, it can all become very annoying very fast.

Did you recognize yourself in any of these?


If not, well done! 🙂 what’s your secret?


If yes – I got you covered!


I would like to share with you some antidotes to the mentioned Xmas traps – and wish you to enjoy this Xmas season more than ever 🙂


Here are some ideas on how to mitigate the “5 traps of Xmas”:

❄️ Focus on appreciation & savoring the good sides of this special season – consciously choose to focus on the good stuff that Xmas is offering us, and enjoy these mindfully, and in moderation. One thing that can hugely help with this is doing a gratitude exercise: daily write down 5 things that you are grateful for on this day. 


🏃‍♀️ Avoid rush & overwhelm with 3 tricks: 

  • Plan early and smart – prepare gifts in time, and do any shopping that needs to be done

  • Focus on being intentional – focus on experiences over things, set intention every morning for what mindset & way of being you wanna maintain throughout this day, ask yourself “What really matters here/today?” often. 

  • Practice self-check-in & deep breaths – keep an eye on your level of energy and stress, and manage them with positive psychology and mindfulness tools

🎄 Sit down with yourself in a moment of silence, and be honest with yourself: 


Which of the family events do you really want to attend? 


How do you want to show up on these – with which emotion, and which intention? 


What are the boundaries you would like to set – about attending the events, but also about their duration, the type of conversations, etc?(book Set Boundaries offers such great insights if you struggle with this!)


Be courageous to say no when you chose to, but also be mindful to savor and be fully present and make the best of the family & work events for which you do show up. 

🍰 Practice mindful eating – before you bite into any food, take a moment to slow down, take a deep breath and savour that first bite truly mindfully. That way you will enjoy it more – but also will notice on time when you wish to stop.


Another good trick can be to take a moment (right now would be a good time!) to think about what rules, principles & strategies would you like to follow this holiday season when it comes down to food. 


Who can help you with this, and how can you set up yourself for success by sticking with these principles? 


💸 Instead of slipping into focusing on gifts & materialistic side of Xmas – choose your intention for this season! 


It could be savouring (savouring winter, savouring food, savouring the beauty of Xmas lights), 


or perhaps mindfully connecting with others (giving them time, space and attention, and mindfully enjoying their company), 


or making this Xmas more of a “green” Xmas and inspire yourself and others to make it ecological (eg give a gift of experiences instead of things, buy a tree with roots and plant it after Xmas, etc).


Whichever it is, a positive intention will protect you from slipping into mainstream “Xmas shopping madness”.

Remember, your best friends to keep Xmas meaningful are mindfulness & intentionality. 


Take a deep breath and mindful stretch every morning, 

and set a clear intention for how you want to engage with your day – and with all the challenges and people that you might be encountering within this day.


Still looking for Xmas gifts for your favorite people?


And if you would like to share the gift of more wellbeing and skip the stressful gift shopping – remember that you can always choose to give a gift a Happiness Academy workshop or a course.

Here are three options that you can choose from to give them as a Xmas gift:

  • Life Design – 3h online workshop (they can choose which timeslot to join) 

  • Take a Leap to Happiness – 2h on-demand workshop to set a foundation for your wellbeing

  • Any of the 4 Happiness Academy courses: Complete Guide to Happiness, Deep Dive into Flow, The Art of Resilience or Build Powerful Mindset – if you choose to gift a course, they will be able to choose between these 4 courses which one they join (they can join throughout 2023)

If you think one of these would make a great gift for someone close to you, do reach out – I will be happy to support you in choosing and planning it.


We pack it into a nice, custom-designed gift certificate that you can print – but to make sure you receive it on time for Xmas, purchase it by the 22nd of December. 


Wishing you an amazing, mindful, and intentional day ahead, and to have one of the most fulfilling Xmas seasons ever!

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