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Beating the Holiday Blues

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A simple tool proven to help us find more ease and dissipate stress as we go is called Notice and Ease. Use it as soon as you start to feel tense, anxious, overwhelmed or sad. It’s important to notice – become emotionally aware and acknowledge what you’re feeling, then to ease and “befriend” the reaction by holding it in your heart, then letting the stressful feeling ease out of your system. If you try and fight against the feeling or push it away, it just drains you. Keep using this tool for one minute or longer until you feel something lighten up, even if you don’t get to a complete release yet. Even a little ease can bring some relief and a more balanced perspective.

  • Step 1: Notice and admit what you’re feeling.
  • Step 2: Try and name the feeling.
  • Step 3: Tell yourself to e-a-s-e- as you gently focus your attention in the area of the heart, relax as you breathe, and e-a-s-e- the stress out.

By admitting a feeling, whatever it is—worry, anxiety, frustration, anger, resistance or even a vague disturbance you can’t put your finger on—you slow down the emotional stress energy running through your system. In Step 3, you redirect your emotional energy to work for you and stop stress accumulation.

  • Practice kindness and patience. These are heart feelings that nourish you and others, but they need to be engaged to provide the benefits. A simple adaption of HeartMath’s Quick Coherence® technique can help you activate positive feelings of kindness and patience when you are irritable. It takes less than a minute to do.
  • Heart Focus – Focus your attention in the area of your heart.
  • Heart-Focused Breathing – As you focus in the area of your heart, imagine your breath is flowing in and out through that area. Breathe slowly and gently in through your heart and slowly and easily out through your heart.
  • Heart Feeling – Continue to breathe through the area of your heart. Activate feelings of genuine kindness and patience as you breathe. Keep doing this until you feel impatience, irritation or stress release.

Coming Up – more Tips for Beating Holiday Blues

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Read more: Depression, Exercises, Family, General Health, Health, Home, Life, Men's Health, Mental Wellness, Nourishing the Heart, Peace, Self-Help, Spirit, Spirituality and Technology, Stress, Women's Health, , , , ,

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Sara, from the HeartMath Institute

Sara Childre is President and CEO of the non-profit Institute of HeartMath. Since 1991, Sara has helped oversee and develop HeartMath trainings, educational products and scientific programs. She was appointed vice president and CFO of the institute in 1992, then president and CEO in 1998.


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9:35PM PST on Jan 9, 2013

Sounds good , Nice to see so many being both honest and comforting .

I'll try .. But kindness & patience , I'm from NJ !

Okay last part was a joke , Am from NJ though .

Thanks so much for post , And thanks to all these great members for sharing their perspective.

12:43PM PST on Dec 29, 2012

Things have a habit of coming to a head around the Xmas period/holidays. We have more time to think & ruminate. This is natural, to a degree, as it allows an oportunity for putting things in perspective & moving on. Accept the feelings/facts & try & let them go. We cannot change the past but can definetly change the future, even if it is our perspective of the future. Talk to others, it does help to externalize the concerns & worries.

1:43PM PST on Dec 28, 2012

it seems I'm not alone in my loneliness, although I'd beg to differ ...

1:56AM PST on Dec 28, 2012

To fight depression, I concentrate on less fortunate and the animals

5:16PM PST on Dec 27, 2012

The thing is, it comes on slowly, slyly, sneakingly in an underpinning way, starting as nothing more than a vague uneasiness, something you could easily dismiss from your mind.........except you can't. It grows. Then, only then, do you realize you might be in trouble. And look for some words of comfort.

This is the 1rst Christmas I have had without my longterm roomate of 12 yrs(just roomates really). I had no idea how much I missed his company(yes a he, but really just roomates-housemates). Since he had never been anything more to me than a roomate, I really didn't think I would have any kind of separation feelings what-so-ever. Wow. I was really wrong.

I was overthrilled when he called to see how I was doing. Just goes to show, relationships can happen whether expected or not.

10:07AM PST on Dec 27, 2012


5:30AM PST on Dec 27, 2012

all you need is light to beat the winter blues and perhaps meds if you have bad depression

4:43AM PST on Dec 27, 2012

Do something'll distract your mind.

2:31AM PST on Dec 27, 2012


2:32PM PST on Dec 26, 2012

thank you!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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