It’s mind boggling thinking of everything extra the silly season brings. Battling crowds at shopping centres, trying to buy the perfect gift for your sister, or your child’s school teacher, or your work secret Santa. Or just trying to fit in catch ups with friends, keep on top of your work commitments and stay on top of the general life admin we all wish we could avoid!
You probably feel like time is your enemy as Christmas looms. But it doesn’t have to feel like that.
To help you introduce a little more ‘calm’ into your lives we’ve compiled some self-care strategies to help you this silly season (and always!)…
Hang out with mother nature
There is just something about nature that feels therapeutic – don’t you agree? Maybe it’s the reminder of a world that is so much bigger than our own, and something about that realisation that makes our daily gripes feel somehow less important.
If you work indoors like a lot of us do, especially in aged care, make it a daily goal to step outside, stretch your legs, take a few deep breaths of fresh air and bask in the sunshine (if you have some to bask in). Either way just get outside!
Inhaling fresh air helps clear your lungs, increase the flow of oxygen and boosts energy levels, concentration and overall mood.
So, if you’re feeling a little foggy in the mind, let nature do its thang!
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
You’d have to live under a rock to not be painfully aware that staying hydrated is the single most VITAL action you can take for your body to function at its best. This becomes even more important as the weather gets warmer and as we enter the festive season where social drinks start flowing.
Instead of waiting for a headache or general fatigue to remind you to hydrate keep a 1 litre bottle at your desk and set an alarm on your phone as often as you need to drink water, or write HYDRATE on a post it note on your computer. Do whatever you need to do to make sure you drink enough water every day.
Sleep is not negotiable
What we said about hydration applies here in equal measure (so calling hydration the most vital action may have been a tad dramatic). Sleep is the greatest, cheapest and most natural ‘performance enhancing drug’ that most people neglect. 7-9 hours is the recommended amount.
With extra commitments and extended to-do lists at this time of year, your body is probably expending more energy than usual, which means it needs time to rest and recharge before you take it to the next social gathering. You may also find yourself driving more frequently during the holiday period, so make sure you are well rested before you hit the road.
Use a little word called NO!
But maybe use it more subtly than that.
Just have the courage to say no to things that aren’t going to serve you well this season…whether it’s a big boozy night out or it’s taking on more at work. Value your time, because when you begin respecting your time others will respect it too.
And being selective about the invitations you accept also means you can be your most amazing self for the people and the things that are the most important to you.
Plan your weeks
Planning your week in advance means you can be objective and prioritise what’s important to you. Instead of trying to ‘find’ time for yourself you can block out that time whether it’s needed for organising Christmas presents, cleaning the garage or just some down time to recharge.
Planning ahead gives you a birds-eye view of your week and means you can mentally prepare for the week ahead. It also means you can start your week feeling more productive and bit less “where do I start on this epic to-do list floating around in my head?”
Self-care is a priority
Making self-care a priority means that you can actually enjoy the magic of Christmas time. It’s a wonderful time to connect with friends and family, reflect on the year that’s been, blast dorky Christmas carols and sing your heart out, binge watch ALL the Christmas movies and create some lasting memories.
Just remember to listen to your body – it knows what it needs and when it needs it. Soak up all the magical moments and begin 2020 feeling REFRESHED.