Warming and relaxing near fireplace with a hot drink.

When many of us think of the holidays, we think of a time we have been looking forward to all year. For many of us, this time might include warm gatherings with friends and family, delectable meals, time away from the office, gorgeous decorations, and time to relax.

This all sounds like a dream, but for many people, the holiday season can be filled with unrealistic and unattainable expectations where instead of rest and relaxation, individuals may find themselves overcome with stress. Many of us may be concerned with cooking the perfect meal, buying the perfect gifts, organizing large gatherings with family and friends, decorating perfectly, and creating a perfectly cozy home ambiance.

In our efforts to reach these expectations and to make our friends and family happy, we can’t forget about ourselves, as there is an important saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup.” This may be where self-care is essential, as it allows individuals to notice their needs and focus on their well-being actively.

Many individuals see self-care simply as jumping into a bubble bath, reading a book, or going shopping, but it can be much more than that, as there are many types of self-care. While self-care may differ from person to person depending on what they find enjoyable and beneficial, they must remain mindful that self-care is not certain things.

For instance, while there might be a certain draw to it, self-care is not doom scrolling on Instagram or Tiktok for hours on end if you find it has a negative impact on you. Self-care can fall into various types, such as physical, emotional, spiritual, environmental, professional, and social. Examples of these types of self-care may be sleeping well, journaling, practicing mindfulness, ensuring you have a clean space to go to, setting work boundaries, and spending time with friends that energize you, respectively.

While it can be challenging to take time for oneself during the hectic holiday season, self-care can be very beneficial. Take a moment to pause and think about the last time you actively participated in self-care. What type of self-care or what self-care activity feels like it aligns with your current needs? As we head into the holiday season, consider how you would like self-care to fit into these coming weeks and if you would like to incorporate it in some form.