Handling The "Holidaze"
We asked members of the Maharishi Ayurveda Products family to share some of their tips for warding off worry and stress during the hectic holiday season. Here are some of the responses:
"I think the holidays are a time of great joy and excitement. Sure, there are extra demands on my time and finances, but one just manages within one's means.
I am careful to make sure I get enough rest and watch my diet. I just use moderation in my choices and I find I enjoy the holidays because of that.
Of course, I always balance my life by practicing the TM® program, which ensures I have enough energy, happiness and clarity to make the most out of the holidays or any other situation.
Steve's holiday happiness tips:
- Relax and enjoy yourself-it will get done. It always has.
- Set your schedule to make time for the extra activities: don't try to have the same schedule and fit in the holiday activities to an already tight schedule.
- Drink soothing tea -- Worry Free Tea or Organic Vata Tea to calm the mind.
- If, in spite of this, you still feel burdened, worried or emotionally upset, use the Worry Free herbal supplement or Blissful Joy as appropriate.
- If things become really tense, see an ayurvedic health professional.
"After seven years of employment at Maharishi Ayurveda Products, I have discovered some great practical ways to reduce holiday stress and increase joy in my life. First and foremost, I practice Transcendental Meditation® twice a day, which sets the tone for the day's activities and reduces stress. This holiday season, especially in light of recent world events, it is even more important to maintain one's balance and composure. I pay particular attention to my diet, eating warm, nutritious meals and spicing them according to my imbalance. With Colorado's Vata climate -- cold and dry in the winter and hot and dry in the summer, I'm usually pacifying Vata. My favorite products are Blissful Joy and Worry Free for this time of the year to help minimize stress and pacify Sadhaka Pitta. Spending time with family and enjoying the beautiful Colorado outdoors is also good for me personally. I enjoy going on hikes in the forest with my dog and friends and always come back feeling renewed.
I particularly enjoy soups during the fall and winter months and gravitate towards a variety of squash. I use a recipe from Vedic Cuisine for Winter Squash Soup where I can use acorn, butternut or hubbard squash with aromatic therapeutic spices like cinnamon, turmeric and whole cumin seeds. Several years ago, The Council (Director of Research and Product Development at Maharishi Ayurveda Products) sold me on the benefits of sautéing spices in ghee to draw out the beneficial essential oils and good flavor of the spices.
I use Ghee a lot in my cooking for its numerous benefits. Basically, any time I use spices such as cumin, coriander, brown mustard seeds, turmeric or fennel, I sauté them in ghee. I can't imagine not cooking with Ghee or spreading some on steamed vegetables or adding it to rice while it is cooking. I have learned to really enjoy rice pudding for the taste of something sweet, and you can make it festive with raisins, chopped almonds, cinnamon or a little cardamom.
"I am, fortunately, a fairly stress-free person. But then we all have our lows, and I usually beat mine by cooking a delicious meal. The very process of washing and chopping fresh green veggies makes me feel calm, connected to nature. It could also have something to do with being fruitfully employed -- I've heard other people say that doing something mechanical like ironing clothes or cleaning out cupboards raises their spirits.
Add to that the sense-stimulating aroma of Ghee, herbs and spices that soon begins to rise off the wok, and I'm humming again. I've grown three containers of herbs -- basil, cilantro and chives, right on my kitchen windowsill, and believe you me -- just standing at the sink to wash a glass can be a soothing experience when those fragrances steal into your breath. I use Maharishi Ayurveda's Churnas in my curries for maximum aroma and flavor as well as personal balance.
Ayurveda says food should always be prepared, served and eaten with care and reverence. So however tired/upset I am, I never sit sulking at the dining table. And anyway, who can remain stressed when there's hot fresh food laid out, waiting to be savored? I also have a feeling my vegetarian diet contributes to my calm temperament, by balancing my doshas and bringing sattva to my mind and body.
Another sure-fire anti-stress strategy I'd like to share. I always knew a good bath did great things for the mind, but I never knew how wonderful a pre-bath massage with warm oil could make you feel. Ever since I've discovered Maharishi Ayurveda's incredible range of massage oils -- Organic Sesame Oil being my favorite -- my bath now beats my stresses even before they can hit!"
FOUR HABITS OF HEALTHY PEOPLE
- They eat on time.
- They never miss a meal.
- They sleep on time.
- They are never too busy to find time for themselves.
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.