I don’t know about you, but in this house from the moment the kids go back to school after the October half term holiday, things suddenly ramp up. It’s as if Christmas mode is turned on with all the behind the scenes prep for Christmas, like present buying and just getting things done before Christmas.
Our decorations don’t go up here until around the 1st December (usually a day or two before because I hate opening my advent calendar with no decorations up – yes I still have an advent calendar!), and every year I declare that this year is THE year I will be Christmas ready for 1st December so I can actually enjoy the Christmas period rather than be completely worn out and stressed for it.
The issue is that from October half term, not only does the stress start to ramp up to get Christmas ready, all the illnesses seem to ramp up too (even though this year I feel they have started from the day the schools went back after the summer!).
Which means that our stress levels can be sky high.
So that means we need to be prioritising taking better care of ourselves in this season, and that can be easier said than done when everything is extremely busy, so here are some ways that you can make it work this festive season!
Sleep needs to be a priority. This time of year makes sleeping earlier a little bit easier because the nights are so dark from earlier on, but I know that prioritising sleep can be difficult, especially if you tend to stay up late after the kids have gone to bed just to have a bit of alone time. I’m guilty of this too, but here is the thing – chances are, you aren’t actually getting anything done after the kids have gone to bed because you are too tired (my brain checks out from the moment I take Anest to bed!) so maybe consider going to bed a bit earlier and waking a bit earlier so that you can actually get a little bit done in peace. Or just get some extra sleep.
As we get closer to christmas and the events starts happening, we tend to have more late nights, which is lovely but prioritise sleep on the days that you can to create a bit of balance.
The christmas period is usually pretty food heavy. We buy foods we don’t normally and want to make the most of them, there is chocolate and festive snacks everywhere, Christmas shopping involves a festive lunch out and it’s all part of the fun of it all, but it can feel a bit like all you are doing is eating or you can feel a bit crap because let’s face it, most of the festive food isn’t the healthiest of options!
So make sure you are eating three balanced meals a day on the days that you can, or if you are going to be out for one meal, make sure you are eating two balanced meals and don’t restrict your food to ‘save your calories for later’ – you don’t need to earn your food.
But having balanced meals is going to keep your blood sugar more stable, and will help you feel more in control around those festive treats because your blood sugar isn’t on a roller coaster ride and you aren’t ravenous.
It’s important that you allow yourself to eat the things that you fancy – trying to restrict them will only end up with you binge eating later, and allowing yourself to eat what sounds good and will feel good in your body will help you feel more in control around food.
Move your body
This time of year can be stressful so moving your body will help you clear your mind and help to reduce stress.
It will also help you close the stress cycle.
Lowering our stress is really important, and nothing ruins the christmas season like feeling completely stressed out – so prioritise moving your body.
Remember a walk counts, and when your stress is high – gentler movement like walking or pilates is much better for you.
Make time for you
When everything becomes really busy, we tend to put ourselves to the bottom of the list but it’s more important than ever to make sure we are prioritising ourselves and making the time to both look after ourselves well and to do the things that make us happy.
Even if just 5-10 minutes is all you have time for in the day, make sure you take that time for you.
This blog post might help – How to take care of yourself when life gets busy.
When things get crazy busy a list will be your best friend. Get everything that needs to be done out of your head and onto paper and actually make a plan for what you are going to do each day.
What things are on your list that you can ask somebody else to do for you? Are there things on your list that in all honesty you don’t need to do at all.
This post might help – Download your thoughts to feel less overwhelmed
I strongly believe that your home should be somewhere you want to be, your escape from the craziness of the world, not the place you want to escape from.
Before christmas is a good time to declutter some stuff you don’t need or no longer get played with, before more things arrive in your home at Christmas.
It is a million times easier to take care of your home, and to have more time to do the things you want to do when you are not just constantly picking up things and feeling overwhelmed by the clutter.
A routine is also really important and will help you to take care of your home in a really stress free way.
These posts mights help – Why mums need less things and The simple way I keep on top of cleaning and decluttering our home
I hope these things help you to feel a bit more taken care of over Christmas.