Fall is finally here in Texas, which means I’m wearing jackets and pants in the AM and switching to shorts and tank tops for the afternoons. Every year I dream about pulling my coat out of the closet but I know once that time gets here I’ll hate it. It’s funny how humans always want what they currently don’t have.
Thanksgiving, a holiday all about feeling gratitude for the things that we do have, happens to be right around the corner. For many, holidays like this bring up a bunch of anxiety around what you “should” be eating, how much you’re putting on your plate, and how to not to let the stress of being around family get to you.
Which brings me to my favorite holiday hack (or hack for any stressful time) ~ Nourish yourself first.
Both a mantra and a strategy, “Nourish yourself first” is how I approach any exciting or stressful event, not just holidays. So what does it actually mean? I apply it in 2 key ways, nourishing your body via food and your mind through self-care.
Holidays mean all kinds of treats, indulgences, and fun food items. It’s a special time when you can sit around the table with people you love and eat delicious food that comes around only a few times per year. Holidays are not a time for restriction, eat whatever you want as long as you nourish yourself first. Are you eating a good mix of protein and fat alongside carbs to balance your blood sugar? Are you getting some veggies in? Are you staying hydrated? With this approach you actually can have your cake and eat it too.
The same goes for other times of stress, even if you’re not indulging in holiday fare you still may be struggling to get food on the table which means lots of takeout or lopsided macronutrient balances. The same approach applies here, nourish yourself first. Can you make sure to get enough water each day? What about taking your vitamins? Or can you prioritize moving your body instead? These are small ways you can continue to nourish yourself first when dealing with unpredictable food quality.
With kids out of school and family in town things are bound to get a bit stressful. Stressful events aren’t the time to let up on your self-care routines. What do you need in order to feel calmer or release some stress? Maybe you ask for some alone time and go for a walk, maybe you ask family to watch the kids so you can get a nap, or maybe you order some pre-made holiday food instead of spending the day cooking. In moments of chaos ask yourself “what can I do to nourish myself first?”.
Like most things, nourishing yourself first is a lot easier said than done. This is why I’ve created a printable PDF that you can use to hold yourself accountable, get ideas for self-care activities that take little time or money, and give you a boost of clarity via small journaling prompts.
Use the checklist as a guide throughout the day. Print it out, keep it where you can see it, and make a commitment to yourself to follow through. Don’t forget to fill out the “Daily Affirmation” section with the mantras and statements that help keep you grounded. You got this. I got this. Let’s show this holiday season (or any chaotic time) who’s boss.
Drop your name and email below and I’ll deliver the PDF to your inbox ASAP. ⬇️ ⬇️ ⬇️