Christmas may not be a time you naturally associate with health benefits, however there are some real up sides to this time of feasting and celebration. Christmas is a time when we gather together and connect with others close to us like family and we connect more socially in the wider community, in our work places, with our friends and neighbours.
Surprisingly people who lack close relationships carry the same risk to their health as smokers and obese people. Loneliness is literally a killer.
The benefits of spending time together and connecting with our loved ones are massive for our mental and physical well-being. Good strong relationships in the community and with close friends and family has been shown to give your immune system a boost and also to guard against the onset of age-related dementia and cardiovascular disease. So, enjoy all those parties and get togethers’ and improve your health as you party.
Another plus we can take from Christmas is that it is also a time of reflection. We tend to look back on our year and our health and our wealth and take stock of where we are and where we want to be. We often start the process of forming our New Year’s resolutions or at least making some plans. As we reflect, if we take a certain attitude, we can also benefit our spirit. The attitude is gratitude! Counting our blessings, as we say.
The habit of being thankful increases our happiness levels right there and then. All we need to do is pause and list for ourselves what we are grateful for in our lives. Doing this at a set time or keeping a gratitude diary helps establish the habit. Talking about the good in our lives with loved ones has the added benefit of increasing our closeness and connection as well as our happiness. Wishing you a Happy Connected Christmas and a life full of Blessings to Count.
There are also some simple strategies to help us stay healthy, Body, Mind and Spirit during what can be a stressful time for many.