This time of year is my favorite. I love the Christmas cheer, the holiday lights, the music, the shopping, and seeing family and friends. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t stressful too. Last week, for the first time in a while I got to go shopping…BY MYSELF! My parents were in town for the week, so they watched the kids so I could do a little Christmas shopping without dragging my two toddlers in and out of stores. I am one of the worst about taking time to do something for myself, even if that means going shopping alone for others.
I have started to learn over the past few years of motherhood how important “me” time is. It makes me a better mom, a better wife, and an overall happier person. I have also noticed that holidays suck you in. I get so busy thinking of presents to buy everyone, hosting family, planning get-togethers, starting and continuing traditions with my little family, cooking, cleaning, shopping and so many other things that come with this busy season, that I don’t even think of taking time for myself.
Who even has time for “me” time this time of year?!
I have started to think more about how much stress it would take off of me during the holidays if I started having some “me” time, so I created a list of little things I can do to get “me” time during this busy season. I hope it will help other as well!
Go for a walk. It is a little cold this time of year, but fresh air really helps to relieve stress. A bonus during the holiday season is seeing everyone’s holiday lights on your walk. It might just spark some Christmas cheer!
Get a coffee. Chattanooga has a lot of local coffee shops such as Milk and Honey, Mean Mug, Mad Priest, Frothy Monkey and others that are great places to just sit, sip, and have some time to yourself.
Read a book. Find a quiet place (like a coffee shop) and crack open a book, or travel to McKay’s used bookstore off Lee Highway for an inexpensive new-to-you book to indulge in this holiday season.
Exercise. Go to a gym, go for a run, look up a home workout on YouTube. A gym with childcare is my favorite. I go to the YMCA in Hixson. I can go for up to two hours while someone else is watching my kids. I have used the time to work out, read, do schoolwork, take a long hot shower, sit in the Jacuzzi or steam room, and have some much needed me time.
Get pampered. Find a local nail salon and get a holiday mani and or pedi, go get your hair done for the holiday season, or go get a massage or a facial.
Start a hobby. Or continue a hobby you haven’t had the chance to do for a while. I love to scrapbook and crochet. I do still crochet; it just takes me forever to finish now. I have found that if I spend 15-30 minutes on a hobby a few nights a week (after the kids are in bed), I seem to be more relaxed when I go to bed.
Go for a drive. Just get out of the house for a few minutes by yourself. Sometimes I like to drive around and look at new-to-me areas around Chattanooga without having two screaming toddlers in the back seat. There are a lot of neighborhoods such as Jason Dr. in East Ridge, that go all out with Christmas lights, and those are fun to drive through.
Holidays are so stressful for me and having a little “me” time is the least I could do for myself. I hope that you too can take time to yourself during this busy, hectic season so you don’t get lost in the hustle and bustle of it all. The great news about taking care of yourself during the holiday season is that it allows you to enjoy the holidays more. So take care of yourself. It is the best thing you can do for yourself and everyone you love.