Tis the Season
We are coming into this holiday season fast and furious.
People are reemerging and celebrating at full capacity again. It has been a while and transitioning into this season may be difficult.
For some, this is what they look forward to the whole year. For others, it’s a time of stress and emotions run high.
Preparing yourself emotionally will keep your nervous system regulated regardless of where you fall in this spectrum. How can you take care of yourself, set boundaries, and still enjoy the festivities?
To Take Care of Others You Must Take Care of Yourself
Schedule it. This is the biggest factor to refresh and refuel. Schedule it. Take time each day. This is especially necessary if you are a caretaker or you’re hosting some of the family gatherings. We all know the analogy of putting your oxygen mask on first before assisting others.
Self-care is not selfish, it’s selfless. It is the key to giving your best to all those who matter most to you. And it’s not just physical; it’s mental, emotional, and spiritual as well. Our relationship with ourselves is the longest and most important relationship we have.
When you make self-care a routine part of your life, research suggests that you can reduce stress and avoid burnout, which is a feeling of emotional, mental, and even physical exhaustion that can be caused by prolonged stress.
Keep it simple, silly! It does not have to be complicated. Creating a few simple activities and strategies, then having them ready will allow you to take short breaks that also refresh. Here are a few to get you going. Pick one or two to do each day.
- Create an easy-to-do morning routine. This could look like 5 minutes of stretching. Reading 20 pages of a book. Journaling. Sipping coffee outside in the sun.
- No is a complete sentence. Permission granted. Don’t overbook yourself. Decline with kindness if your energy is low. Pad all activities with additional time and say no if things intrude.
- Schedule some digital-free time. Sometimes it feels good to disconnect. Schedule time to just be present and free of distractions. You may be surprised at how good this one feels.
- Mental self-care. This can look like listening to your favorite podcast. Reading a book. Doing a crossword puzzle. Writing. Doodling. [Here’s my podcast about doodling!]
- Physical self-care. Something simple here is tracking your water. Breathwork. Yoga. Getting a good night’s sleep. Go for a short walk.
- Spiritual self-care. When was the last time you stargazed? Hang with your pet. Spend time in nature. Attend a service. Take in an inspiring documentary.
- Emotional self-care. Feed your inner child with a favorite childhood activity like hula hooping, coloring, skipping, or drawing. Write a love letter to yourself. Contemplate or write down things you’re grateful for. Read poetry. Talk to a coach, therapist, or mentor.
- Create healthy boundaries. Think of your relationships in circles, from an inner circle to an outer circle. Create your boundaries accordingly. Have a plan of action in place if someone oversteps your boundary.
Find Your Joy
Ultimately, remember what brings you joy.
It’s not about being perfect, it’s about being present. With some self-care, you will be able to give the gift of yourself, authentically and wholly.
I see you, and YOU are beautiful!
- Kapil, R. (2022, March 14). How and why to practice self-care. Retrieved October 20, 2022, from https://www.mentalhealthfirstaid.org/2022/03/how-and-why-to-practice-self-care/
- OSC2. (2022, January 21). The science of self-care. Retrieved October 20, 2022, from https://www.osc.org/the-science-of-self-care/