It’s December. The favorite time of the year for so many people. However, there’s a reason why we chose Self-Care as our Strength of Month in December. Christmas time should be about relaxing and enjoying the company of your loved ones. For many people, the pressure and stress about having a perfect Christmas can almost ruin the whole holiday. That’s why we need to remember the importance of Self-Care. December and Christmas time don’t have to be the most stressful time of the year. It is possible to enjoy Christmas without burnout. We at Mightifier, want to give you 5 tips, how to get the most out of Christmas-time while being mindful of your own well-being.
Self-Compassion is closely related to Self-Care. Have you ever thought how you are talking to yourself when you are having a hard time? Are you treating yourself like a friend, using kind and understanding words? Or are you criticizing yourself, thinking that you are lazy, inefficient, and failed as a person when something goes wrong? With self-compassion we give ourselves the same kindness and care, we would give to a good friend. When doing your Christmas preparations, consider could you be more kind to yourself. If your Christmas cake is not perfect, does it really matter? If you don’t have time to clean and decorate your home, does that make you a bad person? In the end, the Christmas spirit is not about perfect house and perfect delicacies; it’s about relaxing, being grateful, and spending time with other people.
Read more about self-compassion here.
There is an old Zen saying: “You should sit in meditation for 20 minutes a day. Unless you’re too busy, then you should sit for an hour.” Often, when are really busy, we forget to take care of ourselves. Actually, that is the time when we really should be taking care of ourselves. When you have thousand things running in your head and you used the whole notebook for your to-do-list, taking time to sit quietly, doesn’t seem to be the smartest solution. But, meditation can actually be useful for you and even help you to be more productive. Try to take even 10 minutes for yourself, sit quietly and breathe. If you want to follow an easy meditation program, check for example Headspace. They have free test-program to get familiar with meditation habit. After you calm down a while, it is easier to be reasonable and get your things done.
Doing Good for others
It might sound a bit contradictory when you are trying to decrease your own stress and take care of yourself, that we suggest that you should do good for others. But did you know that according to many studies (see e.g. this one), doing good for others increases our own happiness as well? There are so many options to do good for others. You can choose your own family or colleagues, somebody in need, or just random people! Clear your neighbour’s driveway from snow, buy a bag of food for a homeless person, or leave random encouragement notes for people to find. It doesn’t have to take a big effort to do good, but we promise, that it has a great impact on you!
Non-material Christmas presents
For many people, Christmas presents are the main thing in holidays. Also, the main source for stress. Everybody wants to find a perfect gift for their favorite people and people are willing to spend lots of money for one holiday. Let’s face the truth: have you ever felt bad when somebody gave you clothes that are not your size, ugly home decoration, or just something completely useless (we all remember No-Touch Soap Dispensers). Really often, Christmas presents are not something the receiver desires. People will forget what they got from whom. In addition, material gifts are not good for our environment. What if this year you would give different presents? What if this year you gifted the most valuable thing you have: your time? Try to come up with something what you and the gift receiver could do together – Arrange a hiking trip for your partner, take your parents to movies, organize wine tasting for your colleagues, or sign you and your friend up for a new hobby. These Christmas presents bring definitely memorable experiences for both of you and in addition, you can avoid stressful Christmas shopping!
Mighty Christmas -cards
Mightifying is not only for schools and kids. You can test what kind of effect mightifying has at home, as well. Instead of generalized Christmas cards, why wouldn’t you mightify your loved ones? Do you usually save the Christmas cards you receive? We neither! But according to our subjective research, Mightifier Cards tend to be stored on fridge doors or other visible places. Choose 1-3 character strengths and write short reasoning; why do you think those are the strengths of that person? (You can use our templates Mightifier template FI – Mightifier template EN!) Another option is to write a short letter and tell your friends and family members, why you appreciate them. Alert! This might cause wet eyes and caring hugs.
Happy holidays and remember to enjoy!