If you’re like most people during this time of year, you have a lot coming at you from all angles – parties, shopping, family, travel, preparing, decorating, wrapping, eating, drinking……..the list goes on and on and on…
You may find it difficult to give yourself what you need with so many outside expectations and influences swirling around you.
You may even find it tough to know what you need, what you want or how to make any of it happen.
You may be really exhausted because you’re doing a lot of giving and not a lot of self-care.
So, how do you stay true to YOU amidst it all? Here are a few tips and tools to get you going…
1) Block out time that is non-negotiable YOU-time: If you don’t set it aside in advance, it’s easy to find that your time slips away and your energy gets depleted doing and caring for others. These small blocks of time every day are to give you space to replenish, so you can be your best self in all those other moments that aren’t yours alone. Additionally, consider blocking out at least 3 bigger blocks of time per week to do something physically active like yoga, running, or a fun workout class. This has numerous benefits for both your physical and mental health.
2) Cover your body basics: Hydrate. Work in some vegetables. Get quality sleep. Treat yourself with as much love and compassion as you would a cherished loved one. Without this, you won’t have healthy energy to put toward anyone or anything else.
3) Do MindBodyWise mini-check-ins: All you need is 2 minutes when you wake up and 2 minutes before going to sleep. Use this time to check in with your body, your heart, your thoughts and your emotions. As you tune in to each layer, breathe between each. Stay present to what is showing up (without trying to change anything). This kind of mind-body-emotion presence has been shown to help soothe your central nervous system and decrease stress.
4) Pay attention: Throughout the day, stay present to what your body needs and honor it. This may mean that you need to move, or be still, or take a hot bath, or sleep, or stretch or have a glass of water. Whatever it is, do it. Pause throughout the day to listen to your heart and follow it. Here’s a wonderful post that offers 5 simple ways to listen to your heart, by guest blogger and fantastic human Courtney Carver of Be More with Less.
5) Say yes only when you really want to: Learning to say “no” is a wonderful way to say “yes” to your own needs. If you struggle with setting boundaries, then you may find this time of year even more difficult. Here’s a helpful post on learning how to say “no” and setting boundaries.
6) Embrace the Beauty: No matter what your faith is or how you choose to celebrate, there are beautiful, colorful, lights and bright, intricately decorated store windows that pop-up everywhere this time of year. Look up, notice, take time to take it in.
7) Remind yourself it’s only temporary: This season too shall pass. Really, it will.
At the heart of all of these suggestions is this:
Put your own oxygen mask on first!
If you aren’t taking care of yourself, you really aren’t doing anyone any good.
Also, if you employ 1-7 you’ll have a much better shot at appreciating each moment of the season, rather than counting down the days until it’s over. You’ll have more of an open heart to give and receive from those who you cherish.
Curious about your personal mind-body connection? Take the free Mind-Body IQ Quiz to learn more.
P.S. One of the greatest acts of generosity is taking good care of yourself so you have the energy, strength and love to give to others.
P.P.S. Another way to stay true to yourself is to lean on others once in a while. Check out the MindBodyWise Living Room for a free, supportive, supportive group where members are interested in personal growth.
P.P.P.S. Don’t forget to use these 7 Must-Do’s Before 2017 to generate some good stuff in 2016, before it’s gone…