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Seasonal Self-Care: Crafting a Balanced Holiday Wellness Plan


woman holding sparkling bag with a moody edit, overtop written "Restive or Festive", "what do you nee this holiday season"

The holiday season is officially here!


It's the perfect time to press pause and prioritize your wellness, but the reality is, many of us will struggle to find balance during the festivities. Things can get hectic for some, while others may feel lonely.


So how does one keep the mood restive, festive, connected, and nourishing?


You plan.


Now, this may seem counter-intuitive, but by taking a pause and reflecting on what you truly need, you can ensure that the next three weeks fulfill your personal requirements.


For example, psychologists have identified 7 different styles of rest. Some individuals may prioritize getting extra sleep, while others may benefit from gentle physical movement. There are also people who spend most of their day around others and may need to practice saying 'no' to extra plans and parties. On the other hand, some individuals may feel isolated and will need to find ways to feel more connected.


Long story short, it is personal.


Use the following questions to help design holiday wellness plan you can stick to. It is three steps to make sure you think about what you need.



Textured biege background with writing that says, "feeling drained but not sure why? it might be time to identify the kind of rest you truly need."

Step One: Determine what type of rest you need

The concept of seven types of rest, as outlined by Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith in her book "Sacred Rest," includes physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, sensory, and creative rest.

Use these questions to help determine what type of rest you may need:

  1. Physical Rest:

  • Are you consistently getting 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night?

  • Do you feel physically fatigued even after a full night's sleep?

  1. Mental Rest:

  • Do you find your mind racing with thoughts, even during downtime?

  • Do you feel mentally exhausted or overwhelmed?

  1. Emotional Rest:

  • Are you frequently irritable, anxious, or moody?

  • Are you carrying unresolved emotional burdens?

  1. Spiritual Rest:

  • Do you feel a sense of purpose and meaning in your life?

  • Do you feel connected to something greater than yourself?

  1. Social Rest:

  • Are you feeling isolated or lonely?

  • Do you have a healthy balance between social interactions and solitude?

  1. Sensory Rest:

  • Are you regularly exposed to loud or overstimulating environments?

  • Do you take breaks from screens and electronic devices?

  1. Creative Rest:

  • Are you feeling a lack of inspiration or enthusiasm?

  • Do you have time for hobbies and pursuits that bring you joy?

Actions:

  • Jot down or journal which rest you need most. If you have a couple you think you need, rank them.

  • Make note of actions you can take with this new knowledge. For example, if you need creative rest, you may want to set aside time for art, or visit a gallery. If you need sensory rest, you can put your phone early each night and do a digital detox day.

Step 2: Determine your social time (and battery)

The tricky thing about this time of year is that we often believe we have more time. We make plans in advance and assume our future self will have more time than our present self. However, that may not be the case. In fact, we may end up having less time than we expect.

  1. Reflect on Your Energy Levels: How much social interaction energizes you, and when does it start to feel draining?

  2. Assess Your Schedule: What does your holiday schedule look like in terms of social engagements?

  3. Consider Personal Priorities: What are your personal priorities and goals for this holiday season?

  4. Evaluate Impact on Well-Being: Reflect on past holidays. Did too many social obligations cause stress?

  5. Acknowledge Feelings of Loneliness: Are you feeling lonely during the holidays?

  6. Set Realistic Expectations: What are your expectations for social interactions?


Action:

  • Jot down or journal what you think you need based on these questions.

  • Make notes of actions you can take to help yourself. For example, if you know you have feelings of loneliness, perhaps you can volunteer in your community. Or if you are maxed out on social time, you can plan a solo selfcare day for yourself.

Step 3: Make a wellness plan

Now it's time to set yourself up. Here's what you need to do:

  1. Create a list of 3-5 actions that will help you stay rested, festive, and socially balanced. These will be your guiding principles.

  2. Open your calendar and find time slots that work for you. Allocate time for these actions and book them in!

  3. Share your wellness plan with a loved one or friend to hold yourself accountable.

  4. Have regular check-ins. Set aside a specific time once a week to review your wellness calendar and ensure it still works for you. If you need to make adjustments, do so. It's better to make changes than to cancel. Just remember to prioritize your rest and social needs.


As the holiday season unfolds, remember that the key to enjoying its sparkle lies in finding your unique balance. Whether it’s through embracing the right kind of rest, managing your social engagements wisely, or meticulously planning for personal wellness, every step you take is a stride towards a more joyful and fulfilling festive experience.


Let’s not forget, the greatest gift you can give yourself this season is the gift of well-being. So, as you navigate through the glittering lights and merry gatherings, keep in mind that your health and happiness are paramount. By following these simple, yet powerful steps, you can transform the holiday hustle into a harmonious celebration of self-care and connection.


And for more insights like these, don't forget to subscribe to our Wellness Memo. It's your monthly dose of tips, stories, and strategies designed to support your journey to a healthier, happier you. Here's to a holiday season that's as restorative as it is festive – one that leaves you rejuvenated and ready to welcome a bright new year. Join our community today and never miss an update on your path to wellness.

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