Pace Yourself This Holiday Season: Tips for Going the Distance
By: Caroline Dowd-Higgins
Over the past few years, a holiday creep has overtaken the days of autumn. The holiday roll-out in the U.S. has gotten earlier and earlier, and with Thanksgiving behind us, it’s easy to become stressed about completing all the tasks required at work and in your personal life to enjoy the festive season.
Here are five tips to help you go the holiday distance.
1) Get adequate sleep.
We hear it over and over again, but sleep really is the most basic of all the building blocks for mental and physical wellbeing. So many of us are moving through the world in a chronically sleep-deprived state which affects everything from cognitive ability, to weight gain, to social/emotional intelligence and mood.
After hitting the proverbial wall due to burning the candle at both ends, I made a pact with myself to get eight hours of sleep every night, and it has served me well. It can do the same for you — especially during this last month of the year.
2) Detach from screens.
You may laugh out loud reading this tip, but the more you can live in the moment and away from a screen, the better! There is no question that screen time can leech away feelings of wellbeing — especially when guilt starts creeping in because it’s keeping you up too late, or taking time away from your family.
I’m making a conscious effort to avoid the “screen abyss,” and to do life in a more unplugged fashion whenever I can. I challenge you to do the same this holiday season. Doing a digital detox is one of the best gifts we can give ourselves.
3) Be open to receiving as well as giving.
Tis the season to want to give and give, and then give some more, however, if we’re only open to giving rather than receiving, it can actually serve to block the flow of abundance into our lives, according to Amanda Owen, author of The Power of Receiving.
Owen says it’s important to have balance between the two — that giving as well as graciously receiving gifts, compliments, etc. keep our channel of abundance open to new experiences and much joy.
[Related: Expanding Generosity]
4) Know your “no.”
And don’t be afraid to use it.
5. Let go of “perfect!”
Juggling the demands of work, family, and all of the decorating, shopping, socializing, donating, baking, gift-wrapping, card-sending, and all around merry-making that the holidays bring…can drive a person to be very UN-merry…and even more so if you have perfectionist tendencies.
Allow yourself to forget “perfect” this holiday season. Be brave instead and do your best to embrace simplicity and a feeling of contentment. Remember that “good enough” is often just that — good enough!
We owe it to ourselves to practice radical self-care, set strong boundaries, and approach it all as a marathon rather than a sprint. I encourage you to stick a note on the fridge or your work desk reminding you that “slow and steady wins the race!” this holiday season.
Caroline Dowd-Higgins authored the book “This Is Not the Career I Ordered” and maintains the career reinvention blog of the same name. She is Vice President of Career Coaching and Employer Connections for the Ivy Tech Community College system and contributes to Thrive Global, Ellevate Network, Medium, and The Chronicle newspaper in Indiana. Her online video series about career and life empowerment for women is on YouTube. She hosts the three-time award winning podcast, Your Working Life, on iTunes, Spotify, and SoundCloud. Follow her on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter. Her TEDxWOMEN talk about reframing failure and defining success on your own terms is available on YouTube.
Originally published at https://www.ellevatenetwork.com.