When the Holidays Hurt

As we press forward into a new year, we reflect back on the last. Thinking about what we did this past year, who we saw, what we gained, and even what we lost. Traditionally, the holiday season is a time that is full of joy and wonder, however, as we grow and experience different seasons of life, the holidays can be anything but a joyous time. For those of us that have endured a holiday season marred by loss, loneliness, isolation, or need, this time of year can amplify the negative instead of celebrating the positive. 

So now that you are staring at the new year in front of you after potentially coming off a season of hardship, how can you delegate to ensure that this next year is peaceful and fulfilling? The answer is self-care. Self-care can mean a lot of different things. The most important element of self-care is that you take the time to find out what those words mean for you. However, what everyone can benefit from is allotting even just 10 minutes of your day to draw your focus inward and listen to what your body needs. A brisk walk to get your blood moving, reading a few pages of a book, swapping out an unhealthy snack with a healthier option, going to bed 30 minutes earlier, starting every morning with a time of quietness and gratitude… these are all examples of ways to invest in yourself. You cannot heal from past pain or prepare yourself for future hardship if you have not established systems to nurture your body, mind, and spirit.

This year, as we start a season of newness, try to consider small ways in which you can implement a self-care routine. The steps can be very small to make a big difference. Start by committing to 1 self-care exercise a day and see how many you can work up to by the end of this new year. When self-care becomes a lifestyle, peace and harmony follow. Having our mind and spirit in a healthy place allows us to cope with tough seasons of life with grace.

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