Think exercising, eating whole foods, meditation, yoga, reading, time with friends and family, etc. Does reading this list sound overwhelming? Well, it shouldn’t!
During the holidays life can get chaotic and the first few things to go are exercise and nutrition. How do we fight it?
Plan your schedule ahead of time. This will help you stay more present and in the moment, focused on what this time of year is really all about. Don’t stress about the things you cannot control such as things like, um, Traffic. I personally don’t drive much so when I get in bumper to bumper traffic I start to stress especially since I am usually running late when this happens. I take a few deep breaths and try to calm myself down. Remember to belly breath.
Why Self-Care is So Important?
Self-care does not mean selfishness. Remember that! Self-care is about carving time out of your day even if just for 1 minute to think about you. If you don’t take the time for yourself and are constantly putting everyone else’s needs first, how are you going to be a good mom, dad, wife, husband, brother, sister, etc. If you don’t manage yourself it can lead to increased cortisol levels which can impact your waistline, productivity, sleep, and emotional well being. Most, if not all, aspects of self-care will help to reduce stress levels. Read my post about stress here.
Don’t Let the Holidays Be An Excuse
The holiday season can bring about a whole new set of excuses about WHY you don’t have the time or energy to exercise, prepare your meals, or get to bed at a decent time.
Understandably you may have more going on this time of year than you do during other months but that doesn’t mean your exercise, nutrition, and other acts of self-care take a backseat until January.
It’s all about choices! YOU have a choice as to how you handle the “expectations” of the holiday season and how they affect your time and schedule. Keep in mind that the majority of us put these high expectations on ourselves. Remember, those that care about us just want us to be happy and healthy. Letting go of perfection and expectations during this holiday season will allow you to care for yourself in a way that is in line with your needs. It also allows for a lower stress level and more enjoyment. Who doesn’t want that?
Self Care Methods
Carve out 30-45 minutes at least twice a week to take a class at Studio ME or your studio/gym.
Foam roll or use your Yoga Tune Up Balls for self massage. These can be a life saver if you are holding tension in your body. Take anywhere from 10 minutes a day to roll. Even if you only do your feet you will feel better. Grab a Yoga Tune Up Ball, a racquetball, or tennis ball and place one foot on top of the ball. Hold it in the arch of the foot and roll it around. The harder the ball the more you may feel it. Start with something softer. Try rolling your feel while you are brushing your teeth. That’s one minute per foot. Hey, it’s better than nothing!
Other methods could be pampering yourself whether its getting your hair done, a massage (oh I love hot stone massages), pedicure or manicure, deep breathing techniques, etc.
Lastly, do It Because You Want To
Set boundaries and learn to say NO. There are always a ton of holiday parties and events going on. It’s OK to say no. That is not selfish at all! You need to take care of yourself so you don’t get run down. Don’t want to go to a party, say ‘No’. I know it’s hard but you will feel much better.
Set intentions for yourself for the festivities coming up this week and next with the New Year just around the corner. What do you NEED to do and what would you like to do. Focus on the need and then add time for YOURSELF.