During this busy time of year, it is easy to get caught up in the festivities and gift-giving that we forget to take a little time for ourselves. And remember that self-care can look different for everyone. What is relaxing and life-giving for one person might be exhausting or draining for another. So, although you can get ideas on self-care from others, don’t judge or compare what you choose to do.
Here are some ideas on ways to include self-care during the holiday season (and many of these ideas can be used year-round!).
Make sure to schedule some alone time. This time of year can be very busy with parties, dinners, and other get-togethers. But remember to take some time for yourself.
Go for a walk outside. Maybe there is a beautiful snowfall, or maybe it is nice and warm where you live. Either way, enjoy some fresh air.
Stay inside and curl up with a good book. Even better if you add in some comfy pajamas, a warm drink, and a fire in the fireplace!
Spend some time with animals. If you have a pet of your own, spend a few extra moments cuddling, petting, or playing with him. If you don’t have any pets, visit your local animal shelter. They are always in need of an extra dog walker or someone to cuddle with the cats.
Focus on gratitude. Try writing three things you are grateful for every night. This can even be something you invite friends or family to join you in during the holiday season.
Take a bubble bath. Make it more festive with holiday-themed scents.
Give yourself permission to enjoy the festivities. Many people spend more time worrying about how they “shouldn’t” be eating/drinking/doing something, that they forget to just let themselves relax and enjoy the treats.
Take some time each day to unplug from technology.
Decorate your room/apartment/office. Seeing decorations throughout the day can bring a smile to your face.
Drive or walk around the neighborhood to look at holiday lights. You can do this with loved ones or on your own.
Take a nap. (And also make an effort to get enough sleep each night.)
Just as important as it is to include these little self-care ideas into your life this holiday season, it is also important to take care of yourself throughout the day by setting boundaries and preventing yourself from becoming overwhelmed by all of the various activities. In next week’s blog post, we will be talking about ways to handle and prevent the stress that might arise with family and friends during the holiday season.
by Megan Anderson, Ascend Dietetic Intern