Last week I gave you 3 self-care strategies to make the holiday season a bit less stressful. If you haven’t read it yet, click here! Here are 3 more ways to feel your best when your to-do list overwhelms you.
Here in the Northern Hemisphere, we are approaching Winter. Right now it’s supposed to be colder, it’s unseasonably warm at the moment. I’m not complaining…But typically, when we get colder weather, we forget to drink water. Our body needs proper hydration to function well, and luckily we can hydrate in a variety of ways. Ideally you should aim for half your body weight in ounces of water daily, but that doesn’t mean you need to constantly down glasses of water. Here are some ways to get water into your body:
- Water bottle. It’s the most obvious, but I felt like I had to say it. When you carry around a reusable bottle it is a helpful reminder to drink. If you work at a desk, when you finish a call, or an email, or take a pause, take a sip. You can even put a post-it on your monitor to remind you.
- Fruits and veggies. Ideally as the weather gets colder you want to eat more warm, cooked foods, and juicy fruits and vegetables are a great source of water. Eating steamed or sauteed veggies, or baked fruit give us water while warming our body.
- Tea. Caffeinated teas hydrate slightly less as the caffeine is a mild diuretic, but herbal teas are perfect. Consuming warm beverages, like tea, make it easier to drink consistently during the colder months. If you tend to run cold, chai, ginger, or cinnamon teas also warm your body.
- Long-cooked grains. When you cook grains, like rice or quinoa, they absorb the water in which they are cooked. Eating these grains can be a source of hydration too. The more water you use, the more these grains absorb. Using a 2:1 or 3:1 ratio of water to grain can be a sneaky way to get in more water.
2. Eat nourishing foods
When we are hungry, we are often less tolerant to stress and overwhelm. There is a reason the term “hangry” exists. The foods eat can also affect how you feel. While different people thrive on different types of eating, eating foods that fuel your body and energize you are the foods I am talking about here. Eating for fuel and nutrition help you make different choices than if you are eating solely to squelch your hunger. Foods that provide fat, protein, and fiber will keep you full and satisfied for longer.
Notice how you feel after eating. When you feel energized after eating, you are making choices that are good for your body. If you feel sluggish and sleepy, your body telling you that those choices aren’t quite right. It can take some experimentation, as there is no one-size-fits-all way to eat.
During this season, there all sorts of “treats” available. If you eat for health 80-90% of the time, then 10-20% of the time you can have the pumpkin pie, ice cream, or cookies without derailing your health or how you feel. Give yourself permission to indulge in a contained way. Enjoy your indulgences without guilt. It’s a “treat,” not a “cheat.”
How you think about what you put in your mouth affects how you feel and behave. “Treat” is something you choose to give to yourself; “cheat” implies you are doing something wrong and there is often shame attached. When we feel shame, numbing and stress-eating often follow (I know it does for me). “Treat” takes shame out of the equation because you are in control. It’s your choice to indulge; it’s intentional and you can own it!
When life gets stressful it can be easy to get down on yourself. Show yourself the kindness and compassion you would toward another person can ease your stress. Self-compassion allows you to be human; you don’t need to be perfect. If your friend was completely overwhelmed, over-scheduled, and full of anxiety, what would you tell her/him/them? Give yourself the same guidance you would your friend. We would never get down on someone else for being anxious or overwhelmed, why do we do that to ourselves? Be kind to yourself, show yourself some compassion and love. We are already stressed, we don’t need to add to that stress by being mean, critical, or judgmental of ourselves.
If you want to join me for 10 Days of Mindful Moments Dec 1-10, click here to join my Facebook Group! I will be running live and recorded meditation sessions at different times every day, each about 5 minutes long. These classes will be available in my group through New Year’s to give you the opportunity to watch and rewatch whenever you need support.
Read my free eBook, “3 Myths About Meditation, and Why it’s Easier Than You Think!”
Join me for yoga, mediation, stretch, and core classes, live online! Go to purpleroomyoga.com/classes to check them out! If you prefer to take classes on demand, I have hundreds of videos of varying lengths and types in my Video Library at purpleroomyoga.com/on-demand-library. Support your body and mind during the holiday season with yoga!