Prioritizing Self-Care During The Holiday Season

The holiday season for me brings a lot of socializing, togetherness, and joy, which includes the need for organization, budgeting, and planning, all of which stress me out. Throughout the hustle and bustle of this busy season, self-care can fall to the wayside pretty quickly. This self-awareness is the first step in creating self-care practices I can incorporate into my daily routine to avoid becoming overwhelmed. Here are five ways I am prioritizing my self-care this holiday season.

1. Staying active
I can easily sit in front of a screen for over 12 hours a day (working, reading, online shopping, binge-watching reels) and not realize how much time has passed. Especially with it being so cold outside, it can be challenging to find the motivation to move my body. Staying active to me means even 10 minutes of walking, stretching, or taking an on-demand barre class to break up sitting throughout the day. This helps my mind feel more creative and less stagnant.

2. Setting boundaries
November and December are busy months where there are always opportunities to socialize with friends, family, and colleagues. This holiday season, I am allowing myself to not say yes to every invitation that comes my way. Setting these boundaries early on will enable me to schedule the free time I need to recharge.

3. Detaching with love
Detaching with love is a concept I learned through 12-step recovery for family and friends of addicted loved ones. This means stepping back from obsessively worrying about others, telling others what to do, and rescuing them from the consequences of their choices. During the holidays, I am releasing the false sense of responsibility I place on myself for others when they are capable of being responsible for themselves.

4. Acknowledging grief
My mom was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer on Christmas Eve of 2014, and that memory will always stay with me through this winter season. Acknowledging that she is no longer here during joyful activities is a step in my self-care to hold her memory close and allow any emotions that come with it rather than avoid them.

5. Remaining present
I often “future-trip,” which is another way of saying I have anticipatory anxiety. Future-tripping is when I worry about something that hasn’t happened yet, and the anxiety comes from overthinking as an attempt to control the future outcome. My goal is to remain present in the moment as a form of self-care, and I want to enjoy the present’s beauty and grace this holiday season.

How are you prioritizing your self-care this holiday season?