The Holidays are just around the corner and you have so much to do.
Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. I know all I see when those holidays come around is money being spent and making sure I have everyone covered. But I usually forget the most important person in all of this: ME.
Look, it is really easy to make sure the people you love and care about are taken care of during the holidays. For me it includes a grandma with mid-stage dementia, 4 kids who love each of the above holidays with absolutely joy and expectation, 3 dogs who are just like kids, a husband who is simple and complicated at the same time, countless aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, family and in- laws…the list gets even longer, but you get my drift.
I somehow pull off the impossible and make sure all of the above folks are accounted for. I make my list and check it 1,2,3 and even 4 times. Then I say good job. Usually after this, I end up in someone’s ER because I have neglected myself and have to get my iron transfusions early (I get them once a month for a disorder I have) and getting fussed at by my husband who has told me at this point to stop and rest, and my mama who will fuss because she can. But this year I have made strides to change my actions. I can’t be good to anyone at all if I am not performing at my best and you can’t either.
So here are a few ways I have started to do to care for myself:
1. Get adequate rest
Ok, parents, I know this one can be hard. Kids, school, work, and home life never stops needing all of you and all the things. But we can’t always work on fumes and coffee. Our bodies will eventually crash. And this in turn weakens our immune systems. If you can’t get a full night sleep, try to sneak in a nap. Even 30 min can change your day and mood.
2. Take some me time
This one used to be hard for me. I felt guilty for wanting to do something sans kids and husband. But I realized I needed that. I just wanted to be alone. It is necessary for survival. I usually go to the book store or mall and get a little retail therapy. I have biweekly trips to the nail salon for my Mani/Pedi, but I also throw in a facial or massage every now and then.
3. Keep your health in check
Remember, for most of us we are around kids a lot. And kids are walking, talking cold and stomach flu carriers. Also, as the weather changes its so easy to get sick, so make sure you are on top of your health and take the necessary steps if you feel yourself getting sick. I take a daily vitamin. (Actually, I take 2 Flintstones chewables, because I hate swallowing pills.)
4. Do something deliberate
Then keep doing it. For me its yoga. I’m new at it, but every Tuesday and Thursday I am in there doing awkward poses and it does me good.
5. Be selfish
I don’t care what it is. Do something for you and don’t share it with anyone. Its ok to say no. you don’t have to explain it either. “No” is a complete sentence.
6. Keep a journal
This has helped me so much. I write in it at the end of the day every day and just write my thoughts. No outline, just write. I have over 15 journals from the past 4 years and I am amazed at my growth when I read them.
7. Take yourself on a date
I love doing this. I meet the most amazing people and it gives me time to enjoy myself without some asking me to taste my food or being concerned about someone else for the moment.
8. Look over your social media and do a detox
MY FAV: You do not realize how your social media activity can affect you. I have noticed it with myself and I found that when I eliminated the negative, my feeds got more positive and inspiring. It’s ok to unfollow, block, and unfriend. AND it’s ok if others do the same to you. Sometimes the bad take themselves out the equation and that’s even better.
Everybody ain’t for everybody.
You don’t have to do all of these at once, you honestly don’t have to do all of them at all; one or two is fine. Just find a way to incorporate taking care of YOU into your routine and I promise you will see a difference.
Plus, you want to be able to enjoy this time of year without stress and illness. What are some ways you do self-care?