It's easy enough to get wrapped up (excuse the pun) in the chaos of the commercial American holidays. We don't always feel like we have permission to look after our own needs normally, and doubly so this time of year. Here are some signs you might need to unwind, and tips on how to do it.
Self-Care vs Selfish
Those of us who are very caring people often feel shame or guilt around looking after ourselves. If you do fall into that category, remember that you can't take care of anyone else if you're sick (or even just tired). So keep up with your own care too, it really is best for everyone.
If you're not someone who cares often for others, you might get potentially drained in other ways like working too hard. We all have energy expenditure, and it's important to be aware of it.
Stress Related Illness
Don't think you're stressed? It's best to take care of yourself anyway. Unfortunately the COVID-19 pandemic did increase and may still be increasing baseline stress in most individuals worldwide, no matter your views on it. Holidays and other changes routine along with the financial pressure of gift giving can increase stress.
- chronic pain
- frequent illness
- decreased energy and insomnia
- changes in libido
- digestive issues
- appetite changes
- rapid heartbeat
Breaking the Cycle
Self-Care looks a little different for every individual, but prioritizing your basics is a great place to start. Once you have regular healthy(ish) meals, and enough time to sleep or at least rest, then you can add more self-care. Meditation, gentle workouts (avoid too much strain), outside time, and of course time with your pets are great things to add next.