Did you know that the holiday season for some is truly the saddest season. I was once right there. The Holidays are a hard time, we see family and that can be hard. Plus there is tons of pressure to spend loads of money AND stress about spending enough or even getting the perfect gift. Well, I’m here to say IT’S OKAY TO FEEL A LITTLE FRIED. I’ve compiled a list of things that have helped me come back to me when life is feeling a little less than Merry. Take a look!
So if you’ve ever seen Parks and Recreation’s version of ‘treat yo self’ they spend all day getting pampered and shopping. Ladies while this is great you’re going to go broke then you’re going to be all stressed that you aren’t able to do “self-care” because you spent it all shopping and getting your nails done. While this is a version of self care I want to expand your horizons a little bit.
1.) Have quiet time whether it’s early in the morning or just before bed. Take sometime without a cell phone, without a computer and just have time to take inventory on the day or catch up with your significant other without all the screens.
2.) Exercise is so good for mental clarity and stress relief. It feels so good to sweat out your issues and come back with a clear head. Go for a walk and appreciate nature, go to the gym and lift some weights, take an exercise class and meet a new friend. All of these things help us.
3.) Eat Well okay hear me out! You don’t have to be on a paleo-vegan-astronaut diet to be healthy. A version of self care is maybe you don’t have 3 donuts in a day. Or take that extra slice of cake. Your spirit has dominion over your body! NOT the other way around! Start but just trying to eat whole foods, nothing with a label with ingredients you can’t pronounce. Why? Because when food products are made in a lab (processed foods) they’re made with chemicals for color, taste etc. Our body don’t recognize the molecules that those foods have been made with. Our bodies are very efficient and they get tired of trying to figure out what that food molecule is and how to use it. So what does it do with it? It turns it to fat. So for my family whole food eating looks like grilled chicken, or homemade breaded chicken strips. We eat broccoli from the produce department NOT from the freezer department. Another trick? Grocery stores are laid out where the bulk of heavily processed foods exist in the isles NOT around the perimeter! So if you try to stick to shopping around the store not through the store you’re more likely to pick up better foods for you!
4.) Get enough rest look, I’m a mom I get maybe 7 hours of sleep if I’m lucky. I don’t have the luxury of taking a nap but what I try to do is limit how much screen time before bed, and I make sure I am comfortable and I have what I need before the lights go out. This means I wear warm enough or cool enough pjs, I have my pillows how I like them and I also sleep with an eye mask so little bits of light (like from the clock). Don’t bother me. I brush my teeth, I pull my hair up (because it REALLY bugs me), I wash my face etc.
5.) Read something edifying, this means it’s not the killer thriller from the magazine rack at CVS. This means it’s a “self help” book, a romantic comedy or even scripture something LIGHT. Bring into your life goodness, things the build us up, things that make us laugh, things that make us think. Take time to nurture your vocabulary and get away from the screens!
6.) Serve Others this really doesn’t have to be a huge deal you don’t have to go find the people of the flood or the people that have lost their homes. Service can be as small as setting your husbands lunch out for him before work. Or even watching a friends child while they run errands. This means calling a friend and reaching out to them and allowing them to know that you’re there to help or just to listen to whatever they have going on. Colorado started to develop a large transient population (people who move around a lot usually poorer). I would see them on the street corners and never wanting to give money (usually because I didn’t have it) I started making little pouches with stuff in them. I would put a chapstick, a little hand warmer, gloves, a couple of pads (if woman), a fresh pair of socks and a receipt that had a free hamburger on it from Mcdonald’s (you know like the survey thing at the bottom.) Serving others allows us to see them as our Savior sees them, serving others allows us to be grateful for all we have and lifts us up higher than any shopping spree or drunken night ever could. When our children see us serving others it sends a message of kindness and compassion. I think the world is always in need of more kindness and more compassion.
7.) Take a shower, take off your makeup. It’s so important to take our makeup off at the end of the day. My mother told me once that for every night you don’t take your make up off you accelerate the aging of your skin by two weeks. Nuff said. Along those same lines I would say take off your old polish scrub your feet. Find a cheap little face mask from the grocery store that you put on after your shower and watch tv and just relax.
See! There are a lot of ways we can take care of ourselves without spending a fortune or just going to get our nails done. We are women of substance and our lives need to reflect that.
If you’re feeling down or find yourself in a slump here is list of things that can help:
Go outside- just go sit and breathe fresh air
Go for a walk
Call a friend
Bake something and give it away DON’T EAT THEM!
Make your bed and hang up your clothes
Go Screen free for a couple of hour
Avoid social media if you’re feeling down. Comparing your life to highlights of others only makes things worse.
Turn off the TV
Listen to a podcast I recommend “She did it her way” By Amanda Boleyn
I hope these things help!