How to Have a Calm Christmas

Christmas can be a particularly chaotic and stressful time of year for many people. With families to prepare gifts and meals for, social engagements to attend, plus the usual work and life commitments that still have to be met, the pressures can soon add up. The added duties that many of us take on at this time of year can sometimes make the festivities seem more of a burden than a pleasure – and this is the opposite of what our Christmas celebrations should be about!

December is a wonderful time to come together with your friends and family and shouldn’t be a source of stress for anyone! If you are beginning to lose sight of that already this year then there are a few things you can do to bring the enjoyment back and have a peaceful and happy Christmas!

First of all, do not over-exert yourself. It is always nice to be invited to parties and Christmas dinners, however you are not obliged to go to all of them if you simply don’t have the time or energy. With so much to do at this time of year, nobody is going to be offended if you politely decline an invitation.

Secondly, adequately planning ahead for any get-togethers that you may be organising or contributing to will help to alleviate any last minute panic. If you do not have the time to cook then it’s of course completely fine to buy pre-made food for your guests. Alternatively, you can go to a restaurant or cafe, which will also help you to avoid any clean-up at home.

Making the time to care for yourself at this time of year is especially important if you know that you are prone to stress and anxiety. It may be extra hard to find the time to check in with yourself but it is important that you do so in order to stay on top of your feelings. Aim to include at least ten minutes of meditation and deep breathing once a day in a quiet and solitary space.

If you do not have many people to share the festive season with, or many events to attend, then Christmas can still become quite stressful. Many people feel as though there is an expectation of what Christmas should be like, and if your experience doesn’t meet this expectation then your mood may suffer as a result. If this sounds like you, then it is extra important to care for yourself and also to reach out to anybody that you do feel you are close to. Make an extra effort to eat well, exercise often and to keep your mind occupied throughout the day with positivity. Utilising positive affirmations can be particularly effective here as you work to affirm your happiness, confidence and sense of self!

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey this Christmas!

Mexican Hummous

Making your own hummous is great fun and can bring an interesting variety to a meal or snack! It is also easy to store in your fridge for a couple of days so you can always make a huge batch and enjoy it without worrying that it will spoil.

Tahini is the most consistent ingredient used to make hummous and it is a fantastic source of nutrition! Tahini is rich in many of the important minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium, lecithin, iron and potassium! Additionally it is a great source of methionine which helps the liver during the detoxification process. When it comes to easy ways to get calcium into your diet, tahini is the perfect choice as it brings high amounts even in small quantities. On top of all of this, it promotes healthy cell growth whilst also protecting against anaemia!

To make enough hummous to serve a party of four, gather the following ingredients:

1 x 400g tin of black beans, drained and rinsed
50g of coriander
2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup or 60ml of tahini
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. of coconut nectar, honey or maple syrup
1/4 cup or 60ml water

All you have to do to create this delicious hummous is simply put all of the ingredients except the water into your food processer or high-speed blender. Give this a good whizz until it has reached close to the desired texture. The next step is to gradually pour in the the water until the you have that lovely hummous consistency. You can then top this with some more zest and even some chilli flakes if you like – it is now ready to serve! This hummous is especially great for corn chips or sliced red pepper!

mexican hummous the flexi foodie