The holidays are some of the most uplifting and heartwarming times of the year… right?
The extra traffic, extra lines, extra spending, extra complaining from your Aunt Debra about your Uncle Mark not helping to wrap the gifts.
The holidays can turn from heartwarming to hard very quickly.
Making sure you are practicing self care is especially crucial during this time of year!
Check out my 8 self care tips for the holidays below.
What is Self Care?
The Oxford Dictionary lists self care as, “the practice of taking an active role in protecting one’s own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.”
Self care is about making sure you are checking in with yourself and practicing mindful habits to ensure your overall wellbeing.
Self care is not selfish! In fact, it is the complete opposite.
Self care is key to making sure that you are being your best self, which will impact everyone around you as well.
Why is Self Care Important?
Why isn’t self care important?
I mean, seriously.
Self care is the difference between being able to ignore your grandma’s comments about still not having a boyfriend and tossing your sangria glass straight at her head.
Tips to Practice Self Care During the Holiday Season?
*Disclaimer: I am not a mental health professional or a doctor. Stress can be very damaging and these techniques may not be enough to work for everyone, especially depending on your individual situation. If you are finding the holidays to be too much to handle alone, please seek help from a loved one or a professional.
- Make sure to fuel your body as much as your mind. Get enough sleep. Eat wholesome meals. Drink
as muchmore water as you do alcohol.
- Write down your limits and refer to them before entering into situations which they may be tested. These may be topics that you know are especially triggering and you don’t want to engage in. You are not obligated to discuss things that upset you! Tell the person, “thank you but I do not wish to discuss this” and stop engaging. Hold your ground!
- Plan at least one thing daily that you enjoy. Taking a walk. Reading a book. Going for a drive. Baking brownies.
- Come up with a plan to deal with your emotions in a healthy way. This looks different for everyone. Maybe the holidays bring up increased anxiety, anger, resentment, or grief for you. Discover healthy coping mechanisms for these emotions and plan a way that you will process them if they come up.
- Create a “positivity” list. Make a list of 5 positive things in your life that you are thankful for. When you are finished, add 3 things that you find positive about yourself. Refer back to this list when you are feeling down.
- Consider meditation. There are so many guided apps out there, including ones like 10% Happier. You can also look up guided videos on YouTube. Tip: if you have never meditated, try looking up videos for children first.
- Practice stress management throughout the day, not just at the end of it. It is important to decompress as your day goes on. Letting feelings and issues build makes them harder to deal with later. Set designated times to check in with yourself during the day.
- Plan a budget for gift spending and try to get it done early. Mapping out your spending can greatly reduce the amount you drop at the store! Also consider making homemade gifts or eliminating gifts when possible. Instead of spending $100 to buy your dad an Alexa that he can’t figure out how to use, each of you can pool your money to go together for a nice dinner or day trip.
I hope that this is helpful in helping manage some of that holiday stress!
So what do you think?
- What are some ways that you practice self care?
- Do you find taking an active role in your self care helps with the way you manage stress?
- Have you ever given a homemade gift or foregone gifts completely? This year, my family is donating the money we would normally spend on our big pollyanna.
Let me know in the comments below!