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Overcoming ‘New Year’s Overwhelm’

The Christmas holidays can be an emotional time. The joys of the season are often countered by the stresses and strains of family dynamics and an increased workload at home – especially if you are hosting large numbers!

If you have young children in your life they can add fun, chaos, sleep-deprivation, and noise to the mix which often increases overall stress-levels. The winter temperatures and wet conditions also make the usual outdoor ‘letting off steam’ time harder to manage.

For others, Christmas can be a time of great sadness as absent loved-ones are painfully missed. Some spend Christmas alone by choice or necessity. Either way, imagining others surrounded by friends and family can be distressing and draining on limited emotional resources.

Far from feeling rested and revived after the ‘break’, returning to ‘normal life’ in the New Year can feel exhausting and overwhelming. The pressure of finding new ways to ‘improve’ yourself in a bid to stick to advertising-encouraged New Year’s resolutions can feel like an additional ‘to do’ rather than nourishing self-care. It’s no wonder that the first weekend in January is the busiest time of the year for holiday booking companies!

If you too are feeling depleted, it may be time to do LESS not more. If you could pick just one thing to stop this month which would help you feel less tired and better resourced at the end of each day – what would it be?

This needn’t be something big or even something you remove permanently from your life. Simply, for now – what could you give yourself permission to stop doing in order to conserve energy and recharge?  Here are some ideas to think about to get you started but please share yours too, I’d love to hear them!

  • Take a break from social media for a month
  • Check emails no more than twice a day
  • Take regular breaks during the day – no need to fill this time being productive – simply rest!
  • Delegate household chores amongst the whole family
  • Spend less time with people who drain your energy (and ideally replace them with those who boost your mood)!
  • Ask for help from friends and family with child-care/dog-walking etc.
  • Go to bed an hour earlier than usual
  • Say no to additional requests for your time from work/schools/clubs etc.

Self-care starts with giving yourself permission to rest. As any flight attendant will tell you – it’s important to put your own oxygen mask on first before you are equipped to be able to help others.