7 Holiday Self-Care Check-Ins

You don’t have to spend these holidays exhausted and overwhelmed.

This is Day 6 of The Establishment’s 12 Days of Holiday Self Care series. You can read Day 1 here, Day 2 here, Day 3 here, Day 4 here, and Day 5 here.

O h man, we are in the FINAL COUNTDOWN to the Christmas holiday. I know you’re busy. I know you are stressed. I know you are just now starting your holiday shopping. But I need you to take a knee, and check in with yourself. You don’t have to spend these holidays exhausted and overwhelmed. Take a few minutes each day to re-center and you’ll find that these holidays will be a lot more pleasurable.

You’re worth it.

Have you eaten?


No, not a piece of candy or a cookie. Have you eaten a proper meal? Stop what you’re doing and eat. I don’t care if dinner will be served in a few hours so maybe you thought you’d skip lunch. Your brain is low on fuel. Eat.

How is your body feeling?


Any aches and pains? You should take some ibuprofen or put on a heat wrap, and go a little easy on yourself. Don’t be afraid to say, “I can’t do that.” Pain can zap what little patience you have over the holiday season. Don’t suffer through it.

What are your conversation boundaries?

Do you always find yourself cornered by the mother-in-law asking when you’re going to have kids? Do you find yourself under constant attack from your passive-aggressive father? Reenacting old battles with your siblings? Remember: You are under no obligation to suffer at the hands of your relatives. You have every right to set boundaries. I know that this is often easier said than done. Try just giving yourself a couple of rules, like, “If John’s mom asks when I’m going to have a baby, I will just smile and walk away.” Figure out what you will do ahead of time, so that when it happens you aren’t flustered into inaction or goaded into an argument.

What’s upsetting you right now?


With all the pressure to have a “merry” Christmas, many people find themselves trying to silence any negative feelings that arise over the holidays. The problem is, those feelings don’t just go away, and the effort spent trying to ignore them makes things even worse. This doesn’t mean that you have to confront every family member that hurt you or air every grievance. Simply sitting down for a minute and saying to yourself, “This happened and it hurt, and this feeling is valid,” can make a huge difference.

Have you taken your meds, gone on your walk, or practiced your meditation?


Your daily mental-health routine is even more important during the holidays. Don’t let it get lost in the shuffle! No matter how big a hurry you are in, your car won’t drive without gas.

What can you let go of today?

Remember: more cooking just means more dishes.

You have more to do and more on your mind than usual, so what can you let go of? Does Christmas dinner really need to be that fancy? Can you wear sweatpants today? Do you really need to vacuum this week? Let the little things go so that you can focus on what needs to get done.

Image credit: freeimages.com

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