Reiki for Holiday Stress
For many people, the holidays can be a sad or stressful time of year. It may be the first holiday alone after the death of a loved one, or you could be estranged from your family. Perhaps you experience negative emotions when you are around your family, and so you have come to dread spending the holidays with them. Learning how to use Reiki for holiday stress is a wonderful tool.
Overspending is a common cause of stress during the holiday season. Personally, I have noticed that I have pretty good spending habits throughout the year…until the holidays. Then, I begin to feel the pressure of gift buying. Our culture has ingrained in us that the way to show love is through purchasing material things. In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
You might have memories of past holidays that were draining, stressful, or even full of conflict. What began as a time to celebrate has become an exercise in enduring gatherings we don’t enjoy, overworking ourselves, and stretching our budget way past its limits. You can use your Reiki tools to break these old patterns and create a joy-filled holiday season.
You are Not Alone
The first thing is to realize that you are not alone. According to a survey by the American Psychological Association, 38 percent of people said their stress level increases during the holidays. Participants listed a lack of time or money, commercialism, the pressures of gift-giving, and family gatherings as their top stressors.
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) shows that 64% of people with an existing mental illness report that the holidays make their condition worse (1).
How to use Reiki for Holiday Stress
1.) Make an Appointment to do Self-Reiki Every Day
Making time for self-care is a commitment to yourself. Some kind of magic happens when you begin to make choices based on your own best interest. In addition, self-care is the best gift you can give to others because not only are you setting a good example, but you will be better able to enjoy the presence of your friends and family. Your calm energy will go a long way in raising the vibrations of any holiday or gathering. Self-Reiki is the first and most important way to use Reiki for holiday stress.
2.) Set an Intention for the Holidays
Use the Dai Ko Myo symbol to set your intentions. After a few minutes of meditating with the Master symbol, write down your intentions and draw the symbol over the paper. Keep it handy so that if you start getting lost in the stress of the holidays you can refocus on your objectives. If you don’t have the Master symbol, simply send your love, prayers, and healing thoughts to your intentions.
For example, “My aim for this holiday season is to enjoy the season of winter with its long restful nights, and be fully present with all people I have contact with”.
Based on your intentions, you can also create a plan for the holidays. Write down your plan. You may find it helpful in dealing with the pressures of holiday activities. For example, “My plan for the week of Christmas is to take a long walk every day, snuggle with my dog, and have a simple meal on Christmas day with my immediate family”.
With your intentions set, and your plan in place, you will feel more confident, and be able to resist the temptations of exhausting yourself with activities that don’t bring you any value.
3.) Recognize and Address Your Grief
Feelings are a natural part of being human. I have found that simply acknowledging my feelings and giving myself permission to have them goes a long way in helping them pass through. For feelings of grief, use the Emotional Healing (SHK) symbol for comfort, and recognize that they will not last forever. They will pass. If possible, express your feelings to someone you trust… a friend or a counselor. Journaling about your feelings is excellent therapy. Consider joining a support group, especially during the holidays when you might need more support than usual.
4.) Resist Pressure and Create Boundaries
Don’t feel obligated to do anything that robs you of your joy and energy. If you dread cooking a big Christmas meal, order out in advance. If the thought of spending Christmas Eve with your parents is depressing, kindly explain that you have other plans this year. Are you feeling pressure to spend more money than you have? People-pleasing is a bad habit and it can lead to resentment, which can lead to depression. So, focus on meeting your own needs first. This is your life, your season, your holiday.
Let’s suppose you can’t avoid certain gatherings or events. You can still put boundaries in place to keep your holiday on your terms. You can say “I don’t want to talk about politics” or “Yes, I can attend the dinner/party/event but I will have to leave by 7:00 pm “. If you need ideas on using Reiki to set energetic boundaries, read this article.
I used to spend way more than I should have on holiday gifts. Now I realize that a simple, thoughtful gift means just as much as an expensive one. Many times, a heartfelt conversation or a sincere note is the best way to show people we care.
5.) Create a New Holiday Tradition
The Kriya symbol from the Karuna Reiki system is a connector of the physical world and the higher spiritual plains. A double Cho Ku Rei, this symbol calls on our creativity angels to help us manifest our visions.
This will help your creative juices to start flowing and can shift your mood. A Christmas day trip to the movies or a morning-after Christmas brunch with friends could be a fun outing to look forward to. A New Year’s bonfire is always a good way to release the past and set intentions for the new year. The important thing is to make it something unique to you that will truly bring you joy and raise your vibrational energy. Here are some ideas from my set of winter solstice rituals. Remember, this holiday season can be the beginning of special new memories. With self-Reiki, a holiday intention, firm boundaries, and a new tradition, you can empower yourself to appreciate the holidays on your own terms.
I hope you can use Reiki for holiday stress, and stay in the warmth of your light this holiday season.
Blessings and Love,
Sources: 1. National Alliance on Mental Illness. Mental health and the holiday blues. Published November 19, 2014.