By Elle Z. Silvestre
This year’s Christmas will be very different from how we’ve always celebrated the season. Many wonder how our favorite holiday will play out given the corona virus restrictions. No more holiday rush, no more grand reunions and parties, and perhaps only a few can complete the Simbang Gabi in church. This season may be different and out of our comfort zone, so to help you nourish your mind, body, and soul, here are some tips to brighten up this coming Christmas:
1. Outdoor walks. At a time when we’re all supposed to stay indoors, it seems ironic to go out. But now more than ever, going for a walk in nature can be a saving grace for our mental and physical health. Wake up early in the morning and enjoy the cool breeze of Christmas as you take a stroll around your neighborhood or in the park. Regular walks can help reduce stress, improve blood flow, and boost your feel-good hormones. Remember to stay safe by practicing physical distancing and wearing a face mask.
2. Pamper yourself through skin care. Frequent washing of hands and wearing face masks to protect ourselves from COVID-19 dries out our skin and may cause skin rashes; therefore, skin care is essential. A simple gift you can give to yourself is to treat your body to a relaxing and beautiful skin regimen. You don’t have to go to a spa for a facial. You can start off by cleansing with micellar water and then exfoliate with a face scrub. Get an extra dose of hydration by spraying on a facial mist, and then apply facial oil to your skin and gently massage.
3. Chat with family and friends. A lot of us miss our partners, friends, and relatives right now. Although intimate gatherings are not yet allowed because of the pandemic, we can still connect with them through video calls. We’ve spent most of our time quarantined, so reaching out to our loved ones and making plans can be rewarding. Keep the holiday season fun and alive by coming up with gimmicks such as playing games online or delivering your exchange gift to your monito or monita.
4. Drink water. Good hydration is important since we cannot survive without water. Deficiency of water in the body can cause fatigue and loss of concentration, so always keep a tumbler of water with you wherever you are. If you dislike the taste of plain water, add slices of lemon or lime to your drink. Staying hydrated helps put you in a good mood and keeps your body performing at its best.
5. Quality prayer time. One meaningful way to celebrate the Advent during a pandemic is to take a social media detox and talk to God. Develop a simple yet fruitful prayer life with the help of these devotionals: Companion, a Scripture diary that makes Bible reading easier each day; Didache, a daily Bible reflection guide, written by ordinary people, that hopes to encourage the use of Sacred Scriptures among Catholics; Gabay is the Filipino translation of Didache; and Sabbath, a Scripture meditation guide written by priests based on the Mass readings for the day. They’re mini homilies that offer a fresh take on Scripture.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to use the devotionals:
Step 1: Pray for guidance from the Holy Spirit.
Step 2: Read and meditate on the Bible passages and reflections assigned for the day. Highlight the words that spoke most to you.
Step 3: Write your own prayers and reflections.
Step 4: Pray and thank God for His message. Ask for the grace to live it out in your daily life.
To get your copies, go to www.feastbooks.ph. May these tips and devotionals give you the comfort and assurance we all badly need this time. Merry Christmas!
*This excerpt is taken from Feast Magazine December 2020 issue.*
Featured image is from Unsplashed.com.