My Christmas Gift to Myself
Every year, I see loads of people buy gifts for themselves. TVs, jewelry, the latest phone. And every year, I never give myself a gift.
This year, though, that changes. Because this year, I’m giving myself the gift of self care.
I am notoriously awful at taking care of myself. I eat too little, drink too much soda (even though I had kicked the habit for a month), and go to bed way too late. I run ragged getting housework done, creating for my etsy shop, curating our vintage shop, and thinking up blog posts. That’s not even including the time I spend doing school with my kiddos, helping Explorer Cub with his YouTube channel, and loosing loads of sleep to our littlest co-sleeper.
And I don’t mind doing all that one bit. In fact, those things bring me joy. But they also wear me out, and I rarely take time to even grab a bite to eat.
So, this Christmas, I’m making a list of 8 things I need to start doing to take time for myself, to instill a little self-care into my day of taking care of everything else.
1 ) Drink more water. I am horrible at this. And considering the fact that my dad is famous for reminding everyone in the family to “hydrate, hydrate, hydrate,” there’s no excuse for the constant state of dehydration I’m in. Throw in a soda habit that I desperately need to kick (for good, this time), and I know that this one thing would change how I feel each day.
2 ) Go to bed. Moms out there, you get it. You spend all day corralling those beautiful blessings you have, swearing that the moment their sweet little noggins hit the pillow, you won’t be far behind. And then they fall asleep, and. It’s. Glorious. It’s quiet! You can move without someone pulling on you! There’s no fighting! And you stay up…way later than you should, doing things that really are fun but nowhere near as important as catching up in dreamland.
And co-sleeping moms…that’s another story! We co-sleep, and while I could go on and on about the benefits of a family bed, there is one glaring negative. Co-sleeping with little ones is like inviting an awkward elephant into bed with you. Somehow that petite little thing takes up more room than your spouse and you combined. Our oldest sleeps on his own now, and our youngest starts out in his own bed. But every night, around 2 am, we have a little 3 foot tall visitor, and sleep definitely gets impacted.
Because of that, it’s ever so vital to go to bed…and not at midnight! I’ve got to work my way towards an earlier bedtime.
3 ) Pray or meditate. Or heck, do both. As a Christian, I know the importance and value of prayer. And as the day goes on, I pray regularly. But to sit and take a specific amount of time to pray…that’s something I need to work on.
I also believe in the power of meditation. Sometimes it is so easy to get wrapped up in your own mind. There’s so much input, and something as short as 10 minutes of meditation a day can have dramatic effects on your positive well being. I started using an app called “Headspace” on my phone (no affiliation and not a paid sponsor, I just really enjoy it.) Look it up in the app store or on Google Play. It has great meditation options, and even ones just for kids!
4 ) Take a bubble bath. I’m definitely on board with this one…I splurge occasionally and buy a nice bath bomb at Whole Foods. Or just use some of my favorite bubble bath (conveniently, also my shampoo and body wash.) Even if just a short while, a bath once a week soothes my soul.
5 ) Do some yoga. I do yoga intermittently, and when I do, I feel great. For some reason, despite knowing how good it makes me feel, I always put it off. My goal is to spend 15 minutes a day doing yoga…even if it’s just a few simple poses.
6 ) Learn a new skill. I love learning new things, so this one comes easy to me. The next thing on my list: learn Spanish. With us wanting to travel full time in the next few years, a good grasp on a second language is definitely going to help!
7 ) Call a friend. In this day of instant communication with anyone...it’s really easy to lose touch with the people who matter. Taking a few minutes now and then to call up a friend and actually talk to them can brighten not only your day, but their’s as well.
8 ) Read a joke book. Or do a mad lib. Preferably, with someone you love. Even better if that someone you love is under 5 feet and still thinks Goldfish crackers are the epitome of good snack food. I want to make sure I’m laughing more with my kiddos…I want them to hear the sound of my laugh more than the sound of me correcting them. And if I am able to benefit from it as well, that’s even better.
There you have it…the 8 things I am going to start implementing into my life to make myself happier and healthier. Someday soon, after I have these mastered, I’ll make a new list. Until then, what are some things you would put on your self-care list?