The weather has been very unpredictable lately. One day it feels like Fall, the next it feels like Winter has come early, but then a couple days later it goes back to the autumnal warmth.
I’ve been thinking and speaking about transition lately, and it now feels like we’re in the thick of it. What season is it? Do I need a sweater or a coat? Are my energy levels high or low? Do I feel like staying bundled up inside under a blanket or frolicking amongst the fallen leaves? Each day feels so different and I have to reevaluate where I stand.
The holiday season is also right around the corner, with Thanksgiving only a week away. After that, we are thrown right into the madness (and joy) that comes with the end of the year. Basically, we’re in the calm before the storm. And unfortunately, it will be short lived.
As the hustle and bustle draws near, I invite you to stop for a minute. Sit well, close your eyes, and examine how your physical body feels. Then, what’s going on in your mind? Ask yourself, how do I feel today, in this moment? How does my body and mind together affect how I feel as a whole? Am I tired, sluggish, relaxed, excited, stressed, happy?
Next, decide what you can do for yourself, today. If you’re feeling tired, do you need to rest, maybe take a short nap? Or do you need to take it up a notch and build some heat with physical activity? Use this exercise to stay connected to yourself, listen, and give your body what it needs. Because as we move into the mayhem that is December, we won’t always have the time to slow down. We’ll be running between holiday parties, shopping, or maybe leaving town to visit family. A lot is asked of us, and asking ourselves how we feel will be the last thing on our to-do list.
But if we practice self awareness now, it will be easier to carry it with us. We need to stay connected, stay grounded. In turn, we’ll be able to give ourselves more fully and authentically. Basically, don’t forget to take care of yourself before taking care of others!
Need some ideas for how to do that? Here are a few seasonal self care suggestions:
- Make yourself a hot cup of tea, coffee, cider, or mulled wine just the way you like it. Sip it as you sit in front of a warm fire, or candle, and watch the flames flicker
- Take a bath with your favorite seasonal bath products (I’m looking at you, Lush), or add a few drops of essential oil to your bath water with some epsom salts. Try lavender, frankincense, and/or peppermint
- Treat yourself to an at home facial. You know I am all about the skincare, so pick a night where you can do the full routine – cleanse, exfoliate, mask, and moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!
- Watch your favorite holiday movie
- Take your current read to a local coffee shop and try one of their seasonal beverages
- If it’s not too cold in your area, take a walk outside while you still can!
- Sign up for an exercise class you’ve been wanting to try, whether it’s yoga (gentle/restorative is great if you want to slow down and relax), cycling, or kickboxing, anything goes!
- Do something from your childhood. For example, my mom used to make fudge every Christmas time, but now I do it myself. Watching chocolate melt is weirdly satisfying
- Eat a healthy meal. Most of us fall victim to eating all of the sugar in December, but don’t forget your fruits and veggies too. It will you keep you from feeling sluggish all the time
- Journal. How could I not add this? Try writing down what you’re grateful for, what you think your 2018 goals might be, highlights from this year, or a list of people you want to reach out to and maybe reconnect with
Hopefully that’s enough to get you started! Jot down your own list of self care ideas, so that once the time comes, you’ll be set. All you’ll have to do is look at your list and decide what you want to do then and there. Take it easy, my friends, and don’t forget about yourself!