Here we are, down to the final 10 days, and final
weekend, before Christmas.
I’m noticing the stress increase amongst the people
Trying to get everything done and wrapped up for
the year at work. Trying to get all the shopping,
baking and wrapping done. Hitting the parties and
lunches – some because you want to, some because
you have to.
How does that song go…”It’s the most wonderful
time of the year”.
Well, just in case you are one of the multi-millions
feeling the stress right now, let me share with
you a couple of thoughts on reducing that stress –
right here, right now.
I’m a goal-oriented person. Nothing terrible
about that. In fact, most would say that’s a good
But some years back, I found myself losing sight
of the forest for the trees when it came to the
I was so focused on the to-do lists, the lists of
gifts I had to purchase, the parties I had to (or
wanted to) attend, the preparations, etc, that
I lost sight of what this holiday is supposed
to be all about.
Even if you aren’t a Christian, you can still
participate and enjoy Christmas. In many respects,
it has become as much a secular event, open to
people of all religious persuasions, if they
choose to participate.
In fact, I have Jewish, Muslim and Buddhist friends
who tell me that Christmas is one of their favorite
Anyways, here I was, running around and getting
so stressed and bent out of shape about all I had
to do, that I missed out on the enjoyment of
what the holidays are all about.
It seems like I saw less of my friends and family,
did fewer of the things that give me joy, and
greeted the New Year feeling exhausted rather
than refreshed, invigorated and enthusiastic.
So, I made a pact with myself that I have pretty
much managed to keep.
I resolved to slow down the Christmas hoo haw,
focus in on those activities that were the most
important…and actually enjoy the season.
Becoming a mom helped to emphasize that point.
Now Christmas is really focused on my son. And
this helps me see the holiday anew, from a child’s
eyes. It also helps bring back that sense of wonder
and awe, excitement and anticipation.
Aside from this, I also make sure that I adhere
as much as possible to my regular habits
It’s darn near impossible to maintain them
perfectly, and you shouldn’t even try. If you
do, you are setting yourself up for even more
stress due to inflated expectations.
But simple things, like doing my exercises
in the morning, help keep me on track.
In fact, I highly recommend starting your day
with some deep breathing and energy exercises –
like the ones I teach you in the Secret Power
of Dynamic Energy Exercise Course, Volume 2: The
Dynamic Energy Routine – and you will enjoy higher
levels of energy and enthusiam, and be more
focused and productive throughout the day.
You can also use your breathing any time
during the day to help calm and soothe
Take a few moments to simply sit or stand
quietly, and breathe deeply and gently. Let go
of the to-do list and the shopping list. Simply
focus on your breathing for 8 to 10 cycles.
You’ll be amazed at how this simple practice
can calm your mind and help you better concentrate
and organize yourself around what you need to do.
There are other, natural things you can do
to keep yourself on an even keel and feeling
peaceful, even during times of great busyness
and stress. I’ll talk more about this in your
In the meantime, I leave you with one of my
favorite quotes from Morihei Ueshiba, the
founder of Aikido:
“One does not need buildings, money, power, or
status to practice the art of peace. Heaven is
right where you are standing…”
You Can Do It!
P.S. If you are looking for a positive addition
to your daily health habits and exercise routine,
you should check out the Secret Power of Dynamic
Energy Exercise Course, Volume 2: The Dynamic Energy
Routine. The exercises are accessible to all,
regardless of your present condition. And they are
self-reinforcing – they “grow” with you as your
condition and health improve. For more information,
or to get your own copy of the program manual and DVD,
visit the Best Breathing Exercises website .
Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2010
**The contents of this daily email are not to be considered as
medical advice. Always consult a physician before beginning or
changing any health or fitness regimen.**
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