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Holiday self-care - stay happy and healthy this Christmas season

Holiday stress is upon us.

The words Holiday and Stress shouldn’t go together but unfortunately at this time of year, they do.

It’s probably a bit late to give some vital stress-avoiding tips such as – do your shopping early, shop online, don’t over-commit yourself etc.

But I am going to tell you that as this is holiday time for most people – whether it be just the public holidays, over an office closure or an extra day off somewhere – make the most of it.

If you are stressed every other day of the year, take some time to treat yourself with kindness where you can and minimise stress as much as possible.

Presence vs Presents

If you do the obligatory annual present buying, remind yourself that you are giving because you want to, not because you have to. This thought pattern may help to keep any bitterness away about the holiday season. If this doesn’t work I would rethink next year’s Christmas.

Have you thought about asking for no presents? Ask your family to give to charity instead to you. How about organising a Secret Santa instead of buying for everybody?

Your family or friends should appreciate just seeing you over the holiday period because people’s time is precious.

Tis the season is not a reason

Holidays don’t have to be about over-eating, indulging and being ‘naughty’. Remember that no one should expect this of you and you should take that expectation off yourself.

  • Say no if you want to – just because it’s there, doesn’t mean you have to eat it.

  • Avoid sugary snacks – remember that usually when you start, you can’t stop.

  • Not sure healthy food will be at your event? Take a plate with you. Or don't turn up hungry.

  • Remember moderation when approaching food & drink – keep that in the back of your mind.

  • Keep active – swim, walk, run, use your grocery bags as weights…or Xmas ham?!

  • Stay hydrated (with water) – eliminating thirst will reduce hunger. The two won’t be mixed up.

Self-Care is the best Care

Whether you’re having a stay-cation or gallivanting off somewhere, being nice to yourself is a must:

  • Take naps if you are tired during the day

  • Meditate

  • Get a massage

  • Spend time in natural settings or doing gardening – plan beach trips, bushwalks or time in the local park

  • Pat some animals – get some unconditional love coming your way

  • Laugh - Watch some comedy

  • Play board games, do puzzles or play with lego

  • Breathe deeply and slowly into your abdomen when you feel stressed

  • When it’s not necessary, don’t think about work unless it’s in a positive light.

  • Start planning your next holiday – there might be some tempting boxing day flight sales

  • Spend time with the people you want to spend time with, especially if they are positive and fun

  • Limit your time with people that drain your energy

  • Do something artistic or crafty – draw, paint, colour in, make a collage, sew, knit…

  • Find the joy in your day. Every day.

Stay nice, not naughty In the chaos, remember that everyone else are in the same boat as you so show some kindness to others all trying to get through this busy time.

  • Be the person that holds open doors for others

  • Let people go in front of you or cut the line

  • Smile at people when you walk past them in your neighbourhood or supermarket (funnily enough they might not think you’re just crazy)

  • Help family and friends chill out as much as possible – be the zen one and set an example.

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