A 2012 Psychology Today piece illustrates how important finding time for yourself is—it creates a healthy domino effect in all other areas of your life.
Here are five easy and practical ways you can pamper yourself during these busy times:
Connect With Music
Bring more music into your life. A 2013 study published in The Journal of Positive Psychology found that listening to upbeat music over the course of a few weeks increased happiness. If there is a singer or band you enjoy, check their concert schedule and make a date to attend in the new year. If you enjoy working out, synch your listening device with your favorite music list. Channel your dancing days by putting on an upbeat tune and getting down in the middle of your living room. If you feel more adventurous, take a dance class in your area.
Take an Afternoon Nap
In a society that is constantly on the go, a nap might seem out of the question. However, a study in the medical journal Sleep showed that a 10-minute timeout for a nap enhanced a person’s mood significantly. Schedule an afternoon off and head home to steal a few minutes with your eye mask, a dark room and your comfortable bed. Recharging your batteries sometimes requires you to temporarily retreat from all your responsibilities. After a small snooze, you’ll feel rested and be able to tackle your to-do list.
Make It a Spa Day
The way we look influences the way we feel. Treat yourself to a manicure, pedicure or facial (or all three). Or get a massage—it’s a great way to relax and decrease anxiety. Fragrances like lavender and jasmine can also pick you up, so use some aromatherapy oils, too.
Enjoy the Power of Small Pleasures
Sometimes it isn’t practical to get a nap or go away for a spa day, but that doesn’t mean you cannot indulge in small pleasures. Order yourself some beautiful Christmas flowers for the dining room table or pick up a box of fancy chocolates. Dark chocolate can stimulate the release of endorphins and serotonin, a natural anti-depressant. Make your small indulgence anything you want it to be, but the point is to do something you enjoy. Whether it is a walk around the block, watching a movie or having a night to yourself, make it about you and what you like.
Go out With Your Girlfriends
Work and family commitments sometimes hinder our time with our friends, but connection with people outside of your day-to-day routine is important for overall happiness. Friends can improve your self-confidence, boost your happiness and offer a sense of belonging. Make a point to reserve one evening this season with your girlfriends. It can be a shopping trip, dinner or a coffee date. It is a great way to enjoy your time and also connect with others.
Pampering yourself is essential to feel energetic, calm and happy. Slow down, indulge and do what you enjoy to stay stress-free over the busy holidays.