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December 2009 metroSPIRIT: A Holiday Gift To Consider For Yourself

Healthful And Joyful Celebrations

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Redefine Gifts.

For years, I spent significant time and energy finding the perfect gift for everyone on my list.  One day, someone said to me:  “List the gifts you received for various events”.  Then she said “List the people who encouraged you. List the people who helped you out when you needed it.  List the things that meant the most that your mom or dad did.”   She was right.  I could certainly remember some of the gifts that I had received but not many.

When asked to list those who encouraged me, I quickly came up with a list of teachers, coaches, friends, and mentors who had made a difference in my life.  I remember very few material gifts from my parents.  I very much remember all the times they showed up for me, especially when it was hard for them.

My gift list is no longer a list of things to buy for people.  My gift list is people list.  I want to thank those who have helped me, encourage those who need encouragement, support those in challenging times.  I don’t do it all on one day.  It’s a “new years list.” 

Consider buying yourself a gift.  Give thought to a gift of health or wellbeing.  Join a gym. Take some yoga classes.  Get a massage.  Order a juicer or some barley tea from an organic foods store.

If You Do Shop, Shop Early

I do buy some traditional gifts.  To the extent that I buy gifts for my son and nieces and nephews, I am always done with all holiday shopping before Thanksgiving.  On that day, everything is bought, paid for, wrapped and ready.  That frees up my time in December to spend with family and friends in a meaningful way.

Get A Jumpstart On New Years Resolutions

One year, I decided that instead of gaining five pounds during the holidays, I wanted to lose five pounds.  I achieved that goal.  The feeling was amazing.  I set that goal every year now.

Rather than letting exercise go by the wayside during the holidays, I increase my workout level.  On December 1, I mark the workouts in the calendar first.  Workouts take precedence over holiday parties.

I start writing my New Years goals in early November. I try to use the holiday season to get a jumpstart on the goals.

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