As we head into the holiday season, and we collectively come back to a “new normal”, you may be starting to feel that old end of the year pressure. Between the busyness of everyday life and the upcoming events of the holiday season, it may only be mid-October but perhaps you’re starting to feel the crunch of what’s to come. If you are, you’re not alone! At KIM+ONO, we definitely get it.
One of the reasons co-founders, sisters Renee and Tiffany Tam, created these kimono robes was so that you could set your intentions and breathe a little more deeply each and every time you slip into your favorite kimono style. They want getting dressed in your kimono fabric to feel like a little daily ritual to help you feel better, more confident, and more grounded. So as we head toward the holiday season, we wanted to take a pause and set ourselves up for success with rituals to inspire healthy habits for the holiday season.
Now you may have read blog posts about eating healthy or staying sober throughout the months leading up to the holidays — those are great, but at KIM+ONO we are talking about a different kind of health. We’re talking about well-being — the sense that you can handle whatever comes your way because you have the rituals to ground and calm you, rituals that keep you centered in what’s important. So today in the journal, we pulled together a few rituals that you can start now to help form the healthy habit of well-being that can ground you when the full schedule of the holiday season presents itself in a few short weeks!
Every day you can set a new intention, and one of the ways to do that is to mark the beginning of the day with cleansing energy. There can be energy that builds up in our homes — as obvious as when a pile of dishes in the sink and the feeling that gives you compared to the feeling of a cleared out sink. If you feel that stagnant energy in your home, one sweet way to break it up is to burn herbs like sage, cedar, juniper, lavender, or rosemary. Sound healing with a singing bowl is also an option, and even opening the windows in the front and back of your home can help nature and fresh air to circulate into your space. Our kimono store is open seven days a week and whether you need a sage bundle or a singing bowl or even essential oils to transform the smell of your home, you can find all kinds of wellness goodies in our shop in San Francisco. Starting your day with a cleansing routine is one way to start off the day from the place of groundedness and strength, so you can handle whatever comes your way.
Gratitude can sometimes sound a bit trite or give the idea of “toxic positivity” that denies things that do need our attention like injustice and inequity. But thinking about the mundane aspects of life and feeling gratitude for them can be an incredibly centering activity. Perhaps you feel gratitude for the way the sun is shining through the window or the way your favorite kimono fabric feels on your skin. Those are mundane moments that elevate your day by just paying attention to them. Find time to set aside a moment to write down what brings you joy. Make the list full of mundane things and pretty soon, your whole world looks like a gift.
Our bodies hold onto so many things: anxieties, toxins, stresses, and burnout just to name a few. One absolutely free way to feel better is to focus on your breath. Deep breathing can help circulate oxygen in your blood, helping you to feel more awake and even more “alive”. Not sure where to begin? There are a plethora of breathwork classes that you can do online, or go to a local event if there is one in your area. At the very least, you can slip into your silkiest kimono fabric, turn down the lights, light a candle, and do a four count breath in, hold for four counts at the top, exhale for four counts, and hold for four counts at the bottom. Repeat that as much as necessary and start to feel your heart rate slow down and your body come back into the moment.
We know that meditation isn’t for everyone, so here’s what we mean. Take some space and time to allow your mind to wander. You don’t necessarily have to have all the accoutrements and experience to have a deep meditation practice. You could simply allow yourself to log off the computer, put your phone on airplane mode, and sit in nature for a bit. Or wrap a little luxury around your shoulders by wearing your favorite blue kimono robe and focusing on how you feel. Do a body scan from the top of your head to the bottom of your toes. Notice how different it is to turn your loving attention inwards, instead of letting your attention be controlled by outer distractions. Create a ritual around slowing your thoughts down and noticing the details of the moment.
We know how easy it is to get hooked to that second… and third… and fourth… cup of coffee! But resist if you can, lovely! Curb that need to keep getting your caffeine fix too late in the day by scheduling tea time with yourself. If you can’t go out for tea time, there’s no reason why you can’t set yourself up wherever you are. Find your favorite herbal tea, drape your favorite kimono style across your shoulders, and make a whole ritual of winding down your thoughts and energy in the mid-afternoon. Especially as the days get shorter and it gets darker earlier in the day, help coach yourself to slow it down in the middle of the afternoon with a tea time ritual.
We know life can get hectic, especially at the holidays, but we hope these ideas for creating rituals for healthier habits bring a sense of well-being to you all season long.