The holiday season can be a wonderful time of the year, but it can also bring a lot of stress. This year, especially, it's important to practice self-care to manage anxiety and ensure that your mental state is a positive one. The challenges of navigating the current pandemic during this unusual holiday season are immense. Therefore, it's crucial to employ strategies to find calm during this stressful time. Self-care is not something that should be overlooked; it's vital to your mental health and happiness.
1. Be mindful of burnout.
Many of us have gained more responsibilities over the pandemic: child care, homeschooling, and side gigs are just a few examples. However, as responsibilities have grown, so has the number of stressors that we face daily. Financial stress, health worries, and feelings of isolation are all worries that the Covid-19 pandemic has created.
All of the above can be exhausting, so you must take time to relax and be centered. Scheduling time for an outdoor walk, reading a book, or just connecting with your family can be a great way to relieve pressure and get re-energized. It's also vital that you are kind to yourself and accept that it's okay not to be perfect. These times are challenging for everyone, and struggle is to be expected.
2. Take care of your health.
Health should always be an essential aspect of your life, but it's especially important right now. Not only will looking after yourself help you stay safe from the pandemic, but it will also help lift your spirits and lower your stress levels. Eating well, connecting with loved ones (Zoom and FaceTime are great ways to chat safely), and exercising a bit each day will lift your mood and ensure that your body is being cared for.
3. Embrace Growth
Using this time of challenge to learn a new skill or pursue a passion can provide you with a sense of purpose and allow you to focus on the positives. It can be something as simple as learning how to knit or as ambitious as pursuing a career change: no idea, hobby, or ambition is too big or too small. This is also another great way to connect with others. There are many organizations with online meetings, and fun skills like sewing or drawing are great ways to spend personal time with others.
All of these strategies are great ways to ensure that your needs are being met. Connecting with others, being gentle with yourself, and finding the positives are key tools in your pandemic toolbox. These are not one-size-fits-all, though, so feel free to add personal tweaks!