Self-Care Your Way Through The Holidays

Whether you are grieving loved ones, managing busy schedules and travel, or simply just trying to get through, self-care can be vital to keep you going through the holiday season. Research has shown that a significant portion of folks manage depression, anxiety and other mental health challenges during the holidays. Participating in self-care is important because it helps you manage stress, lowers your risk of illness, increases your energy, build confidence and more, to support your overall functioning. You may be wondering what I mean by self-care, and truly this can mean so many different things. Self-care is doing things that help us to live well, participating in activities that promote and support our all around well-being.

Self-care may encompass components from several areas, including: mental, emotional, physical, environmental, spiritual, recreational and social. Planning times to engage in self-care activities during the holidays could be vital to your mental health and well-being, especially when potentially encountering added stressors. It’s recommended to try to implement at least one practice a week as a part of a routine, but feel free to do what you need! You may save some bigger self-care activities for once a month, but there is plenty of self-care that can be low cost. You may ask, how do I know when I need some self-care and how much? There is no perfect formula for this, but being mindful of how you’re thinking and feeling can help you to recognize when you may need some more nurturing and support from yourself.

Some tips for potential self-care activities include: taking a walk, making some sort of art, taking a bath, lighting a candle/incense or diffusing essential oils, give someone a hug (with consent, of course), hydrate, take deep breaths, call a friend, turn off notifications, move your body. Try to orient your practice to activities that are for you, the things that make you feel good. This may look different for everyone, and it’s absolutely okay if your self-care routine is not the same as other folks. As you move through this upcoming holiday season, my hope is that you find practicing self-care routinely will add to and support your well-being. May you feel what you feel this season, even if it’s not what you feel is expected of you from others. Sometimes we are all just doing what we can, and that is enough. May you all find small ways to be well this season, take care.

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