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    The Gift Of Self-Care & 4 Tips To Help Yourself Receive

    The thick of the holidays is here! Whether you’re enjoying or just trying to get through this week, I want to share some easy ways that you can get in some self-care. Plus, I created a short guided meditation for you to easily center yourself amidst the December bustle.

    If you’re like many people I’ve been working with, you’re probably feeling the stress of the holiday season. How’s it going for you, and how are you hanging in there?

    Are you taking care of yourself?

    For many of us, December is all about prioritizing others, whether it’s getting in visits to loved ones, traveling to those we don’t get to see often, splitting time with families, biting our tongues through uncomfortable conversations with relatives, or making sure we work hard enough so the boss is happy and we get the bonus. We are feeling tense, pressured, rushed, overwhelmed, and irritable. Some of us are also feeling disappointed and lonely due to high expectations around this time of year.

    It’s now more than any other time of year that invites us to really take a look at how we’re taking care of ourselves — and see where we can prioritize ourselves!! Our bodies that carry out tasks and our minds that stay lit up making sure we don’t miss or leave anything out – they need our own tender care and attention too. Especially if we want to show up as our loving selves for everyone else!

    So, what’s in your way? Many people share with me that they don’t have the time, but when we dig a little deeper we find that there’s some part inside that feels guilty and selfish for taking time out for self. It’s not even enough to know studies show that engaging in self-care activities can build resilience, improve health, reduce stress, and improve our quality of life. All of these things support us in having better relationships. Isn’t that what we want this time of year?

    Well, even if you feel like you just don’t have time for self-care right now, here are 4 ways you can easily incorporate simple self-care practices into your day. Even if you try one of these just one time, let me know how it goes!

    1. Walk – walking is such an easy and powerful way to take some space when you need it. A 10 minute walk around the block helps to bring about a sense of calm energy (compared to a spike in energy when you eat a sugary snack as a pick-me-up). On a short walk you can clear your mind, exercise a deep breath, and know that you’re doing something good for your body and your mind. Even if it means parking your car a little further away from your house or the grocery store than you normally do!
    2. Boundaries – there is so much to be said on this topic, but for now – you are allowed to not participate in conversations you don’t want to be in. You are allowed to leave the party early. You are allowed to cancel plans. You are allowed to not answer the phone or respond to a text until you’re ready. For those of us who want a great and easy way out, you are allowed to say you need to use the restroom or take a phone call in the middle of uncomfortable discussions.
    3. Self-Compassion – maybe you reacted to that family member who just gets to you every time you see them. You know, the reaction you declared you wouldn’t have because you’ve been working on it, and you wanted to show up as your best self this year. I get it, you want t be kind, but you’re human! We tend to pressure ourselves to be all-loving this time of year, but we’re not perfect, and the reality is we still get triggered. So, breathe, and have some compassion for yourself. Gently whisper to yourself – “I’m doing the best I can.”
    4. Meditate – as many of us know, meditation is a powerful way for us not only reduce stress, but to shift out of reactivity and into a state of calm awareness. Here’s a guided meditation for you to center yourself with. It’s just 4.5 minutes long, so excuse yourself for a moment, pop in your headphones, and give it a listen.

    My next 6 week mindfulness meditation series begins January 16th with a Free Introductory Class happening January 9th at 5pm.

    This series teaches you practical and effective techniques to cultivate calm and reduce stress and anxiety in your daily life with the support of a group. Book a free consultation to see how the group can help you.

    With much warmth and kindness,