This blog came about after a well needed conversation with one of my closest friends about how I felt on a particular day. We discussed the importance of really being kind to yourself. I have found that I need to take a little more time out for myself during the holiday season to keep on my A game of helping others. The holiday season is rough for many people around the world. There is a lot of pressure to be at the top of your game all the time during the season. We are expected from the time Black Friday rolls around to be running through aisles searching for presents, then perfectly wrapping those presents, and then finding the perfect hiding spot so that the kids believe in Santa for just a few more years. On top of that we have to plan and execute the perfect Christmas dinner and be the perfect host even though your significant other invited his co-worker that you do not get along with. Then all the while, we are supposed to be giving 101% of ourselves to others. These are all amazing activities that I partake in every holiday season, and I encourage everyone to get as much out of the season as possible, but if you are at your A game during the holiday season, that is OK too! Many people suffer from all the stress that the holiday season brings. I researched some helpful ways to unstress and be kind to yourself during the holiday.
#1 Mentally Prepare Yourself
Take some time out before the hustle and bustle start and mentally prepare for the season ahead. Prepare yourself for the heightened emotions and mounds of activities that the holiday season will bring. I take time to meditate quite frequently throughout the holiday season. This gives me time to be fully aware of all that is expected of me during the season and how I will conquer it!
I found this on nearly every list. Don’t these authors know that we are bloated down with delicious maple glazed ham? Ha But, exercise does have its benefits! Even a brisk, or not so brisk, walk around the block can clear your mind and boost your energy!
#3 Reach out
It is very easy as compassionate individuals to never seek others help. Many helpers and kind people tend to be the one giving the help and not receiving it. I am telling you it is OK to reach out! Call a friend or seek some advice from a trusted individual in the community. Just talking about what is stressing you out can help!
#4 Stay Organized
This is the one I am the worst with. I tend to abandon all organizational tips I have ever heard as soon as I hear Christmas music. Staying organized and keeping lists takes away from the common stress of being overwhelmed throughout the holiday season.
#5 Perform an Intentional and/or Personal Act of Kindness
Nothing alleviates my stress more than seeing my loved one’s reactions after I surprised them with an act of kindness. I would encourage you to not even make it a gift. Even just a phone call or meeting an old friend for lunch can boost your happiness this holiday season. 🙂
The holidays are one of the happiest times of the year. This holiday season take the necessary time to be kind to yourself. We can not be kind to others if we are not kind to ourselves. Take the time out to be kind to YOU!
“Be gentle first with yourself if you wish to be gentle with others.” -Lama Yeshe