As I started writing this piece, I realized these weren’t only tips for the holiday season but for fall in general. In talking with my friends, moms or otherwise, we realized that once fall starts all the madness begins. It’s back to school, the beginning of activities for our kids, and countless events in the community. And then it’s Halloween and Thanksgiving and all of the December holiday festivities, not to mention birthdays and everything else in between. Ahhh! It’s enough to make you want to crawl back in bed and stay there. But who has time for that?!
As women we hear constantly how we need to take more time out for ourselves, but as we all know it’s easier said than done. I struggle with feelings of guilt or the idea that I should be tending to my never-ending to-do list and crossing more things off. Or if I have free time unexpectedly, it should always be spent with my girls, who I love more than anything in this world. But then I realize that taking some time for myself is okay, and makes me a better mom, wife, daughter, sister, employee, and friend.
When I’m given the time to recharge, I’m not only better for myself but for all those who depend on me. Don’t get me wrong, I need to remind myself of that often. But instead of only reminding myself, I thought I could remind you as well. And share four self-care tips that I hope we will all find useful!
Order a massage on delivery!
So picture this, an app where you can schedule a sixty, ninety, or one-hundred-twenty-minute massage in your home and can pick the day or time. That’s exactly what Soothe is!
And in most cases, you’ll pay less with Soothe than the same service at the spa. You might be thinking, “But my home is not a relaxing space, and a spa is.” But think of it more as the path of least resistance. Sometimes it’s difficult to get to the spa, which requires allocating at least two to three hours at minimum. For the moms out there, it also requires ensuring we have childcare for that entire time. Sometimes all that planning is a deterrent to taking some “me” time. With the Soothe app you only have to take an hour (if you choose the sixty-minute one, which I did) out of your day and still get the benefit of some relaxation.
So now let’s tackle how this can be relaxing in your home despite all the commotion (or maybe that’s just me!). My husband and I tried the app, and we were pleasantly surprised on all counts. The masseuse was professional, on time, and talked to each of us about what we were looking for. It was very easy for her to set up her table, allowing us to pick the quietest room in our house. She had her iPhone ready with relaxing music that drowned out any noise my daughters were making. And as I mentioned before, it was very well priced, so I didn’t feel guilty for splurging.
If you’re looking to squeeze in some me time between the flurry of holiday activities, Soothe might be a great option for you!
Take an hour out for yourself and do whatever you want!
Can I tell you a story? The other day I was feeling seriously burnt out. We all have those days, don’t we? I felt that tickle in my throat like I was getting sick (which I quickly tried to get rid of with airborne, green tea, and hot water with lemon and honey) and felt devoid of energy. Instead of ploughing through (which is what I would normally do), I made a firm decision to take an hour for myself. In that hour I wasn’t going to worry about my to-do list, whether I was doing everything I can and should for my girls, work, my marriage, my home, none of it! Instead, I was going to allow myself a small break.
In my case I decided to check out a new show that I’d heard a lot of great reviews about. Even then I thought I should be doing something more “enlightening” than watching mindless television and then I realized no, it’s okay to just veg out.
Sometimes the best self-care is simply about giving yourself permission! Many times all it takes is that one hour to recharge us and keep us moving. In all the madness that will ensue in the coming months, take an hour here and there to rest and recharge. Don’t judge yourself or give yourself a hard time. Remember, you need and deserve it!
Take some time to unplug.
If you’re reading this and thinking, “Priya, please. When can I ever unplug? It’s way too busy for me to even think about that,” this tip might be especially important for you.
I say that because it’s especially important for me, and we might be in the same boat. Lately I find myself on my phone all the time! Whether I’m checking my work email, my personal email, looking up something I need to get for the girls or the house, or just checking out social media, my phone is attached to me. I find that time and time again it takes me away from being in the present moment. So again I’m not telling you do this for an entire day (but definitely go for it if you can), but take a half an hour here or an hour there to put your phone somewhere where you can’t access it, or check it very often.
I’ve decided that when I’m doing my daughters’ bedtime routine, I’ll try as hard as possible to put my phone away. This is my time to be present with them, and it’s the last piece of me they get before the day ends. I try to let my husband know so he can call me on our home phone with anything urgent. Set up a time and set expectations with those closest to you that you will not be able to access your phone during this time. And again make it as short or long as you want, whatever will fit best into your lifestyle. I’m excited to see if I notice any improvements in mood and productivity with this small but significant change!
Take care of yourself internally and externally.
I don’t know about you, but when life is insanely busy and I’m not eating well or sleeping well, my skin shows it! There are some lucky women who still look magnificent, no matter what, but I’m not one of them. And when I feel good inside and out, I’m in a better mood, plain and simple.
With the craziness of fall and the holidays, we are out at more parties and events, or just generally busy with life, and maybe not eating or drinking as well as we would like. Of course this has an adverse effect on your skin. So in the next three months remember to do some things that are good for your skin and that will counteract some of that damage. It can be daunting to do them all, so if you can fit in one or two, you are winning! Here’s what I suggest.
1) Hydrate internally! Drink as much water as you can, and when possible add some lemon or lime in there.
2) Hydrate externally! I travel a lot in the fall, and a lot of us travel for the holidays. Pack the Caudalie Beauty Elixir in your handbag wherever you go. It’s designed to hydrate your skin (particularly useful when you’re on planes) and set makeup. It’s also a multitasking product that will help you get through the rest of the year with your skin looking fresh. Formulated without parabens, and at a price point of $18 for the travel size, it’s a fall/winter must have.
3) Eat more fruits and vegetables, and if you are in a rush, try a fresh pressed juice from a local juice spot or Whole Foods. And for those ambitious ones out there, you can juice at home as well. I know Toni has some great recipes for at-home juices that will keep you energized. On the day after a night out, try to reach for some carrots and hummus versus pita chips and hummus. Changes like this will keep you, and your skin, at its best.
4) Don’t forget to switch out your moisturizer this holiday season. I don’t talk about this enough on MB, but I love skincare! With my lifestyle and sensitive skin, I don’t always get to experiment as much as I would like. But when the temperatures start to drop outside and we turn the heat up inside, we need to help our skin adjust. In many cases this requires incorporating a heavier moisturizer into our routine.
I hope these tips will help you take a little better care of yourself during the fall and throughout the holiday season. Remember when you feel better, everything runs more smoothly!