But by putting this festive time of year on a pedestal we somehow manage to convince ourselves that we have to attend every Christmas party, drink every free mimosa, eat three serves of Christmas turkey and have a piece of every dessert on the Christmas buffet table, just in case we never get the opportunity to divulge in this magical time of year ever again.
It’s a pretty irrational fear though, don’t you think? Considering Christmas comes around without fail every single year!
This is when the guilt creeps in. Our irrational mind has just acted like an impoverished child who may never see their next meal again, and our rational mind feels instant remorse. It all boils down to what is known in psychology circles as a “lack mentality”, and it’s a mindset that many of us unconsciously apply at this time of year.
Here’s some simple steps to flip this detrimental lack mentality on it’s head before the guilt kicks in.
- Apply an abundance mentality. Aside from cherries and mangoes, we have access to all of the ingredients that make Christmas “special” all year around. We could whip up a roast turkey dinner with hasselback potatoes and a fruit adorned pavlova on April 3rd if we so desired, right? Try and apply this mentality to your next Xmas do. Repeat to yourself (internally, out loud would be weird) “there is plenty more where this came from”.
- Do the math. I am 31 years old. I have celebrated Christmas 31 times already and I hope to celebrate at least another 65. Work the maths out for your own life and then count how many opportunities you’re going to have left to enjoy a seafood spread, a whole packet of macadamia shortbread and mimosas at 10am (no? just my family?). So slow down and savour the moment.
- Breathe before you eat. Did your mother ever tell you to think before you talk? Well I’m here to say breathe before you eat. Take a conscious moment to take a few breaths, apply the aforementioned abundance mentality, work out how many opportunities you’re going to get to eat like this again and then serve yourself from the buffet. Plus, by taking deep belly breaths before we sit down to a meal, we shift into our parasympathetic nervous system which puts our body in rest and digest mode, rather than fight or flight mode (where many of us spend far too much time).
- Remember the real magic of Christmas. Presents! I’m joking, it’s about celebrating with loved ones, meeting new people, wearing pretty outfits, fairy lights, the smell of pine needles, gardenias, kisses under the mistletoe, time off, good books, family cricket matches, bad santa photos, the list is endless.
- Concentrate on nice before naughty. Santa is making a list and checking it twice, so make sure he’s got an abundance of vegetables and fruit, some nutrient-dense superfoods, lean proteins and ample amounts of filtered water on there. If you can ensure you’re filling up on nutrients before all of the indulgent Christmas fare then it will soften the blow come Jan 1. I always start Christmas morning with a nutrient dense green smoothie and make sure that the Christmas table is covered with abundant salads and fresh summer fruits. That way I can be sure I’m filled to the brim with the good stuff before I add in indulgent Xmas treats.
For more expert Christmas tips and recipe ideas join Jordanna’s Inspired Christmas list.
Jordanna Levin, creator of The Inspired Table, is a holistic lifestyle coach whose focus is to heal people’s ‘complicated’ relationship with food. She believes food should inspire and nourish, not be a source of stress and anxiety. Through her coaching programs, cooking workshops, inspiring speaking gigs and popular food blog she’s rewriting decades worth of misleading messaging and creating a new movement of mindful and inspired eating. Ho