Tips for Practicing Self-Care During the Holiday Season
Self-care is a year-round endeavor, but the hustle and bustle of the holidays makes it harder to carve out time for yourself and your needs. For many people, the joy of seeing loved ones and joining in the festivities comes with the stress of strained relationships, unhappy memories, or other negative experiences that make the holidays difficult.
These experiences don’t have to ruin the season, though. Take care of yourself and make the most of this time of year with these tips for practicing self-care during the holiday season.
Don’t Neglect the Basics
From decorating your house to meeting seasonal deadlines at work, the holidays create a lot of extra responsibilities. When stress piles high, it’s easy to forget about even the most basic self-care principles. Don’t let this hectic season get in the way of a good night’s sleep, your daily water intake, or your usual exercise routine. You’ve worked hard to build these and other good habits throughout the year, so don’t let them fall to the wayside in the face of the holidays.
Fight the Mental Health Stigma
The holidays can be particularly stressful for anyone who faces mental health challenges such as depression—especially if holiday events bring you around friends or family members who don’t have the same acceptance and understanding of mental health as you do.
Facing mental health stigma is never easy, but knowledge is a good way to combat ignorance. Learning how depression affects men specifically helps you gain a better understanding of the challenges you face while also giving you the information and vocabulary you need to discuss this issue with others if you so choose.
Remember, at the end of the day, your experiences are what matter the most. If you find yourself facing mental health stigma during the holidays, lean on the people in your life who understand and set boundaries for the people and settings that are more emotionally draining.
Prioritize Meaning Over Perfection
One of the most important self-care tips for the holiday season is to stop overthinking and avoid the trap of perfection. Whether you’re decorating your house or frosting cookies, chances are you won’t end up with picture-perfect results every time.
A bulb might burn out after you finish hanging the lights. A gingerbread man might have a crooked smile. The cat might get fur all over the tree blanket. You live in the real world, not a Christmas special. That means things don’t always work out the way you imagined, and that’s okay! The important thing is to put the effort in and find meaning for yourself and your loved ones in the moments you share together.