Reduce Your Stress With These Christmas Self-care Ideas
Christmas, stress, and being busy seem to go hand in hand. When I think about the busy malls and the last-minute shopping it definitely raises my stress levels. It’s no wonder that for many busy people, self-care goes out the window during Christmas time. When is there even time for self-care? It’s tricky though because without taking the time to care for yourself, the stress keeps piling up. Feeling overwhelmed and exhausted is just not the vibe this Christmas! So, let’s chat about Christmas self-care ideas and how to be a little less busy this season.
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Stress and Christmas
Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves during this time of year? It’s like a little stress gremlin takes over our brains and we lose all rational thought.
For many people, stress starts with buying Christmas presents! Maybe you don’t have the money for it this year. Or you waited too long to order things online and have to head into the crazy busy stores instead. Or maybe you don’t know what to get your loved ones and that is weighing on you.
Another source of stress is family gatherings. Let’s be real – not everyone has a great relationship with their family. It might be tough to sit through a family dinner with a judgy grandma or parents who don’t understand your career path.
You could also be feeling the stress of being busy! Most of us have a lot going on in December. Between working, shopping, decorating, planning, attending events, trying to just enjoy the season, and many other responsibilities, it’s so easy to feel overwhelmed and like a chicken with no head!
So there seems to be quite a few reasons to feel stressed around Christmas time. You might experience one or more of the above reasons (and that’s only scratching the surface of stressors).
For me personally, gift giving and money are always a stress. I usually have grand plans for gifts and then I wait too long and have to scramble or I focus a lot on the cost! Nowadays I’m making more money and have to worry a bit less about these costs but that scarcity money mindset lingers!
All of this to say – if you are feeling the stress this Christmas, you are not alone. It’s normal! It’s also totally okay.
Life might be moving a mile a minute but you don’t have to! There are ways to slow down and be less busy even during the craziest season of the year. The reality is, some stress has to be endured at this time (like work) but you can change the things you have control of!
How to be less busy
If you consider yourself a busy person and live a busy lifestyle, this is for you!
Something I’ve always held with me is the difference between being busy and being productive. They are two different things!
Let’s break that down. Being busy means you are doing a lot of things without necessarily making a lot of progress. Being productive means you are doing things that matter and help you reach a goal.
A busy person is more rushed and frantic. They are multitaskers focusing on too much at once (like cleaning the house while also trying to order Christmas presents and baking cookies and finishing up work emails). Busy people tend to take too much on and struggle with saying no.
A productive person is more calculated. They focus on one task and do it all the way. The tasks they pick are also done based on importance. If family is coming over for dinner, a productive person is cleaning up the house or prepping dinner, not tackling the living room DIY project.
When it comes to Christmas time people tend to want to do it all. Which is not always a bad thing but tasks stop being productive when you have no plan and get sidetracked by less important things.
Do you really need to deep clean the whole house or could you just clean up the main areas?
Do you really need to go to two different malls and other stores to shop or could you find other options for gifts?
Do you really need to stay at work late every single day or could you set better boundaries and/or ask for help?
Do you really need to bake 12 dozen cookies for the whole family, neighbors, and your kid’s class or could you scale it back a bit and/or divide the work with others?
Think about if you are a busy person or a productive person and where you could make some changes.
Self-care ideas for Christmas
Since we’ve already established that you are probably living a pretty busy life and may not have a ton of free time during the holiday season, it’s important to focus on self-care that works for you!
Self-care is all-encompassing and can be super different from person to person. So let’s look at some Christmas self-care ideas in different areas of life and for different lifestyles!
Physical self-care for Christmas
A few ideas for someone looking to fill their physical cup. Perfect for when your body needs rest or needs some love.
- use a Christmas bath bomb
- make a holiday-inspired meal
- walk in the snow
- do a Christmas-themed workout
- relax with the soothing scents in a simmer pot
Mental self-care for Christmas
Sometimes your mind needs to just stop for a minute, especially around Christmas time. Try these self-care ideas for a brain break.
- read a holiday book – check out this holiday book list for some inspo
- try making a holiday craft
- watch your favorite Christmas comfort movie
- color in a holiday adult coloring book
- listen to Christmas music and sing along
Emotional self-care for Christmas
There are a lot of feelings happening during the holiday season. It’s never a bad idea to take a step back for yourself.
- brain dump everything you want to do over the holidays
- set healthy boundaries with your family
- take a break from your phone
- journal about your favorite Christmas memories
- book a therapy appointment over the holidays
Social self-care for Christmas
Humans are social creatures and even if you think you’re the biggest introvert in the whole world, you still need a little bit of social time. That social time might look different for you than others but talking to others or being around people is good for you!
- grab a Starbucks holiday drink with a friend
- check out your local Christmas market
- take some time to unfollow people on social media who no longer serve you (and maybe follow some new people)
- send cute Christmas cards to your family and friends
- host a low-key holiday dinner with friends
Self-care for the full-time worker
There just isn’t a lot of time at the end of the work day to focus on yourself. I get it because I am also a full-time worker! It’s even harder during Christmas so try these quick self-care ideas.
- pack some healthy meals for work (you can even make them festive like these pizza stockings)
- take a power nap when you get home
- decorate your workspace for the holidays
- change up for skin care with some Christmas-inspired products
- create a bliss list to fall back on those long days
Self-care for the last-minute gal
If you are running around right before Christmas then you will definitely need some self-care. Take some time for yourself, girl!
- do a 5 minute guided meditation
- make a holiday gratitude list
- walk outside and touch the snow, trees, or whatever nature you can find
- listen to an uplifting podcast while you do your last-minute shopping
- call a friend or family member just to chat
Self-care for the girl who wants to do it all this Christmas
It can be hard to do it all. Some might even say it’s impossible (which sometimes it is!!) However, if you are motivated to do all the holiday things and be a great host, cook, and shopper, all the power to you – just remember to focus on productivity to make your life easier (and some self-care).
- bake Christmas cookies
- write personalized Christmas letters for your loved ones
- get away for the weekend for a winter retreat
- start your fun-filled days with holiday tea
- try a new winter sport with your friends
Self-care for winter haters
The cold weather and dreary, dark days aren’t for everyone. You may need some extra TLC this winter and that’s okay!
- treat yourself to a cozy pajama set
- use a happy lamp to boost your mood
- take a vitamin D supplement
- journal about the small joys during this time of year (believe it or not, there are many!!)
- go to a hot yoga class
Well, there you have it! It’s a busy time of year for most of us but it’s not impossible to slow down and enjoy some self-care.
It’s actually a necessity! There is no reason to run yourself into the ground this Christmas.
Self-care can be quick and easy. So if you are still convinced that you don’t have enough time to relax, I promise you that you have 10 minutes somewhere in your day.
Go through the Christmas self-care ideas above and find one that you can do for 10 minutes! Just setting time aside for yourself to sit on the couch and do nothing is good enough sometimes.
And remember, being busy and being productive is not the same thing. Take a moment to evaluate your schedule and routine this holiday season. Are you putting unnecessary stress on yourself because you’re not planning your time?
I hope you all have a fabulous holiday season and get to do lots of fun and relaxing things. As always, I believe in you and know you can do those hard things and achieve those big goals 🤍
What Christmas self-care will you be doing this year?