Admittedly, it’s an occupational hazard for us SuperMoms to want to create the most magical holidays for our kids and family. There’s some unwritten rule that this is part of our job description. We happily oblige year after year. Yet, year after year we’re more tired than ever because of the stress and overwhelm that comes with being the magic creator.
The mere thought of cutting back on decorating, cookie baking, and gift giving is enough to provoke massive anxiety. What will the kids think if I scale back? My family? My husband? Will the magic of the holidays be completely lost?
I can tell you with 100% confidence that scaling back will only have one side effect: YOUR SANITY AND HEALTH.
Coming from personal experience, your kids and husband won’t care that you put up a tree and called it good. Your mother and mother-in- law will be just fine with a main course and a few sides rather than a feast to serve 20 when there’s only 10 of you. Your kids will still have a magical holiday with the things at the top of their list rather than the entire list and then some. Everyone will enjoy the 2 different kinds of cookies you make rather than the 8 (or more) you’ve made in the past.
Let me say it loud enough for you to hear me in the back: NO ONE WILL CARE.
You know what they care about? They care that YOU’RE happy. They care that YOU are less stressed and overwhelmed. They care that YOU’RE present. They want the smile on YOUR face to be genuine, rather than masking the fact you’re so tired you feel sick.
Okay, so you’ve scaled back. Now what? The reality is that even though you’ve scaled back, there’s still a lot to do. The stress is less yet ever present.
Staying sane isn’t just about scaling back. It’s about being intentional about taking care of your own needs. Let’s be honest- a hot bath, manicure and pedicure, or a massage aren’t in the cards. Instead of adding something unrealistic to your to-do list, why don’t you become intentional about some things you’re already are doing? Eating, drinking, sleeping. Already doing it.
5 Ways to Take Care of Yourself During the Holidays that Will Help You Stay Sane and Healthy
1. Eat moderate protein, a little more fat, and loads of low-glycemic vegetables
This formula will give you the fuel you need to maintain your energy. You won’t have dips and spikes in your blood sugar that are a drain. You’ll feel happier and more equip to tackle your to-do list.
2. Drink enough water
Hydration, energy, and mental clarity are highly correlated. Drinking enough water also helps you feel satisfied and is a good replacement for mindless snacking and eating. Aim for half your body weight in water. With this I don’t want you to guess how much water you’re drinking in a day. Fill bottles, containers, or jars at the start of the day with all the water you need to drink throughout the day. Set a goal to be done with all of it by 5pm. (Because no one has time to be peeing all night, so get it done early!)
3. Prioritize sleep as if your life depends on it
This is hard the other 10 months of the year. It’s even harder the last two months of the year. Be diligent and get 7-8 hours most days of the week. Your sleep effects your energy, mood, and hormone levels. Getting enough sleep with make you less likely to binge on sugary foods too.
4. Manage your stress
Whatever you normally do to de-stress, make it a priority. Something 100 percent non-negotiable. Schedule it in. Write it down. Do whatever you need to do to get it done most days of the week. Maybe it’s yoga, 10 minutes of meditation, reading a book for 15 minutes, running, exercising… doesn’t matter. It just needs to be something that when you do it, you’re hitting reset.
5. Listen to your body
As SuperMoms we tend to power though even though we feel like we’re going to fall over. This gets us in a world of trouble and doesn’t make us any more efficient or productive. (Just more tired, annoyed, and cranky.) When you’re exhausted, take a few minutes to rest before getting back to the madness. Give yourself permission to say, “I need a minute. I’ll be right back.” Everyone will thank you.
Last but not least, try your best. If you give yourself some grace and permission to not be all the things to everybody, the perfection police will back off. Just by making an attempt to be intentional about taking care of yourself during the holidays puts you ahead of the game.