Had a wonderful teleclass last night on COOKING AND STRATEGIZING FOR THE HOLIDAY TABLE.
Five proven ways to curb your sugar cravings.
Four strategies for taking care of yourself during the holidays.
Plus a lot of other information.
The participants left saying “you’ve given us a lot to think about”.
Half-jokingly, I mentioned that I might start a support group for people wanting to get off sugar. At least three participants really liked the idea. What do you think?
Today I’m sharing tips that I learned from Resurge for taking care of yourself during the holidays.
.Â Many of usÂ haveÂ these Dickensian visuals of the holidays. The table is laden with the glistening garnet cranberry sauce, the aroma of mulled spices wafts through the air, the sound of the fireplace crackling, and distant carols and laughter permeates the air. Take a moment to think about what your image of the holidays is.
Now take off those rose-colored glasses. Think back to your last few holiday seasons. As opposed to the highlights, what were the lowlights? Reflect on that for a moment.
With your rosy colored glasses off, think about the situation you’re walking into. What is likely to give you trouble? Is it the aunt who makes passive-aggressive comments about your weight? It is the cousin who always drinks too much and picks fights? PerhapsÂ the holidaysÂ bring up feelings of want, of lack, of loneliness. They do for many people. Suicides tend to spike over the holiday season.
Also, think about – what foods are likely to give you trouble? If Billy Bob makes his famous chocolate bourbon pecan pie, will you start off vowing to have none and end up consuming three pieces and feeling sick and guilty?
. If you know Auntie Lily’s going to look at you and go “so, I see you haven’t been going to the gym”, decide in advance what you might want to say. Do you want to change the subject? Do you want to comment on her dangling triceps? Perhaps you might – gasp – be honest and tell her she is hurting your feelings.
Decide it with food too. If you know in advance that the sight of a plateful of chocolate brownies combined with a stressful environment sends you into binge mode, try baking your own with some natural sweeteners and a whole grain flour and bring them to the celebration. That way, if you do go into excessive eating, at least you’ll be eating something less toxic.
. So, having been in the mental health field for many years, I’m really familiar with people talking about self-care. And I remember one conference where we were discussing how we take care of ourselves, as practitioners. One woman was like “I get a massage once a month”. One other woman was like “I take a bath. Calgon, take me away.”
Contrary to popular belief, self-care is not formulaic. It’s not just taking a bubble bath or writing in my journal. It’s about identifying what you need. If you take a bubble bath when you really need to take a drive and do some screaming in the car “it’s not self-care. Listen to yourself. That’s true self-care.
- CREATE SUPPORTIVE STRUCTURE. It’s crucial to build self-care into your schedule. This is especially true when you are in a stressful situation. Set aside time each day to give yourself what you need. So if you’re going to be spending from 8 am to 8 pm with your family on Xmas, and you know that’s just going to be too much, decide where you might want to build in breaks. Do you need to duck out for a walk at 11? Perhaps a trip to the bathroom at 3 pm? Figure this out in advance and promise it to yourself.
- TAKE SPACE. If a situation arises that is particularly nasty or uncomfortable, don’t forget its okay to remove yourself while you decide on your next step. Just making the excuse that you have to visit the bathroom, or go outside for some fresh air, will work fine. This way you can figure out what the situation calls for without being directly in the heat of the moment.