Nurturing Yourself Through The Holidays

November 21, 2023

As sun-drenched days herald the arrival of the holiday season, we find ourselves navigating a unique blend of festive joy and the demands of everyday life. Balancing career commitments, family responsibilities, and the anticipation of creating memorable holidays can be a juggling act that leaves little room for self-care. In the hustle and bustle of decking the halls and preparing for celebrations, it’s easy for the well-being of the woman at the heart of it all to take a back seat.

This article is a gentle reminder of how crucial it is to nurture yourself at this time of year. We’ll explore practical strategies and mindful approaches that focus on two pillars – (1) maintain energy (2) rest and recharge

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Maintain Energy

If you want to actually enjoy this season you’re gonna need some good energy. Siting on the sidelines cause I’m too exhausted to get involved ain’t my idea of festive holiday fun!

  1. 3 Balanced Meals a Day: I’m gonna keep repeating this message because sooooo many busy women I work with forget to eat (cause they sooooooo damn busy) or intentionally skip meals in order to ‘fit festive meals in’ or ‘make up for’ festive meals you’ve enjoyed (this is classic diet culture rearing its ugly head). Try to eat regular, balanced meals throughout the day to keep your energy levels up and your appetite in check. Our Summer Festive Recipe eBook is chock full of quick nutrition recipes to help keep your energy levels up amid the holiday chaos.
  2. Move well, move often: Short bursts count and its totally ok to take a break from your usual workout routine! The important thing to remember is your body loves to move, and needs to move. Enjoy simple at home workouts, go for brisk morning walks before the heat hits, do some gentle before bed stretches or head on active outdoor adventures with family or friends.
  3. Stay Hydrated: Sip wisely through the heat. Water is your ally—infuse it with fruit or herbs for a refreshing twist.
  4. Something Is Better Than Nothing: Think of your health and fitness habits as a dial – rather than an on/off switch. At this time of year its really important to maintain health habits and routines – but be a little more realistic, flexible and adaptable about it. That ‘all or nothing’ mentality, or pursuit of perfection, is a total buzz killing grinch.  The dial method can assist with this! I find super useful is pegging 5mins on Sundays to sit down and plan my health habit intentions for the week (with the dial method in mind) using my Say Yes Journal.

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Rest and Recharge

Obviously we ain’t going to be running like the Energizer bunny at all times right? Your beautiful body and brain needs time to rest and recharge too!

  1. Protect Your Sleep: Protect your sleep sanctuary and nighttime routine at this time of year. A dark room, cool temp and a digital detox before bedtime will do wonders.
  2. Splice In Mindfulness: Finding pockets of calm amongst the chaos is crucial. Ditch the idea that mindfulness is complicated, time consuming or can only be done when you’re on your own in a quiet dimly lit room that smells like Frankincense. It’s just not realistic. Deep breaths, noise cancelling headphones, transition activities, and brief mindful breaks spliced into your day offer much needed respite.
  3. Disconnect from Work: Switch off the work mode during the holidays. Create boundaries—your time away is sacred. Recharge by being present in the moment.
  4. Take a Break from Routine: Your brain cannot switch easily from hyperactivity to rest. When it is not occupied, it will start to wander and wonder again. Months of unnoticed physical discomfort and repressed emotions can emerge, potentially making you feel unwell or unhappy. Changing your routine or environment will stimulate your brain in a different way, smoothing your transition into a slower pace.
  5. Reconnect with Nature: Amidst the tinsel, find solace in nature. Take a barefooted walk on grass, have a picnic dinner in the park, sit in your backyard with an iced tea, lay under a tree and watch the leaves move in the breeze. Sounds corny, but nature has a calming rhythm.
  6. Embrace Creative Self-Expression: Don’t let thoughts of “I’m not good at that” stop you from finding an outlet in being creative. Whether it’s journaling, painting, air dry clay creations, decorating beach shells, dancing or playing music – self-expression can be a seriously soothing self care strategy to your holiday. Heres a super simple Christmas themed drawing example.
  7. Share the Mental Load: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the mental load should NOT fall solely on women or mothers, though I know it most often does. Parenting is a team sport. Dividing festive and childcare tasks (including the thinking, pre-planning and planning stages of the task) fairly with your partner/household/support team AND communicating openly about how you’re feeling, whats on your mind and what you need help with is crucial. Need help with this? You might like to check out the book FAIR PLAY by Eve Rodsky or check out the free resources available on The Mental Load Project website.

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May this season be not just a celebration of traditions but a celebration of you—nurtured, energized, and present in the warmth of summer and family love.

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READY TO SAY YES TO YOURSELF AND YOUR HEALTH? OUR YES-2-YOU OFFER IS A GREAT PLACE TO START (or re-start)!

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