Supporting Parents. Fostering Change.

Monthly Archives: November 2011

“Ah, come on, dad, this could be the miracle that saves The Simpsons Christmas! If TV has taught me anything, it’s that miracles always happens to poor kids at Christmas. It happened to Tiny Tim, it happened to Charlie Brown, it happened to The Smurfs, and it’s gonna happen to us!” ~ Bart Simpson

Even though the movie marathons are starting soon, holiday movie classics DO NOT reflect real life. If that were true, it’d always snow and never be unsafe to drive, kids would unwrap every item on their wish lists, and everyone would be wearing the same kind, color and brand of sweater. Get real! The holidays aren’t perfect….because nobody is perfect!

Want to make this holiday season a lot easier on yourself and your family? Make reasonable expectations:

  1. Do your best to stick to your regular family routine. Changing your schedule to fit in holiday activities and traveling can be tough on you and your kids, so try to keep things as normal as possible. Try to keep bedtimes and mealtimes the same even when you’re away from home.
  2. Talk with your family about schedules. Take time to explain each day’s activities to your children and let them know what you expect from them. Together, choose activities that you really want to do. You can’t do everything, so you might let your children pick their favorite things for your family to do. Do the things that you all will enjoy the most, and then say “no” to extra activities.

Continue reading “Holiday Stress” 

Posted in Holiday Anxiety | Comments off

As I look out my window right now and see the overcast, gray sky I’m reminded of the seasons changing and that winter is just around the corner. While it’s a wonderful practice to be in the present moment, at times it’s good to look toward the future so we can use this moment for planning.

I believe it was Benjamin Franklin who said, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” When it comes to seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or just being negatively affected by less light or shorter days, this is a great opportunity to get your ducks in a row to stave off a depressive slide.

Here are key tips to stave off any upcoming fall/winter blues:

Mindfulness training – If you haven’t jumped in yet now may be the time. Mindfulness is a wonderful practice for breaking out of the ruminative cycle that can get triggered as the days get shorter. We start to open the mind to become more appreciative of what’s here instead of focused on what isn’t here. This is the seed of resiliency.

Exercise – Many people wait until New Years to make the resolution, this isn’t preventative care. There’s no other time than now. If the gym is too big of a commitment, what about getting a 20 minute exercise or yoga DVD to practice to or making a 5-minute commitment to do a few sit-ups and push-ups each day. The fact is, if you’re not going to take care of yourself who will?

Continue reading “Winter Blues”

Posted in Depression, Mindfulness Meditation | Comments off