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6 sanity savers EVERY woman needs to try for the Christmas period

6 sanity savers EVERY woman needs to try for the Christmas period

6 sanity savers EVERY woman needs to try for the Christmas period
Here's a short list of seven sanity saving suggestions, born of my own personal as well as professional experience of Christmas madness - feel free to use (or of course add to it!)
This might sounds odd, unnecessary, or even indulgent - but bear with me. What would it be like to get yourself a little gift, teenyweeny or extravagant - your choice? Wrap it (if you have enough paper;)) put it under the tree if you have one and wait until Christmas day to open it. Maybe write yourself a nice card as you would to a friend.  Acknowledge your year, your trials, your joys, your achievement. We rarely treat ourselves as well as we treat our friends!
  • Make time alone. This might seem impossible, but it probably is possible, with help. It's the asking for or accepting of help that can be the hard part for many of us. How often have you been offered help that went unaccepted? Imagine if you allowed yourself to not think of yourself as a burden?  (Again, how would you treat a beloved friend?) So even if it's just an hour away for a walk or hiding under your beds from the kids, give yourself the precious gift of time. A walk might be more beneficial I reckon...
  • Call a friend for a chat.  An actual call, not a text or snap, not a PM, DM, Whatsapp, not an email. The online world has huge benefits of course, you’re online right now! But it can be isolating.  Or even better - meet up! Do yourself (and a friend) a favour and give yourselves the lovely gift of real connection. And choose wisely: while some friendships are nourishing, some can be draining.  It's OK to avoid the latter, particularly when your resources are already depleted. Self-care is not selfish. 
  • Notice and appreciate what you have and what's going well. Gratitude measurably enhances our mood. We tend to focus on what we don’t have – it's utterly human, but has it ever cheered you up?
  • Giving time or giving something away also feels good. Even if it's just ten minutes popping into the check on an elderly neighbour - your ten minutes might feel huge for them and have a feel-good effect that could last for days, or longer. For both of you!
  • When you feel sad (I'm saying 'when' not 'if', because sadness is triggered for most of us at Christmas), let yourself be and avoid the temptation to beat yourself up for not being all festive and sparkly. This is an emotional time, especially if you are grieving or have experienced some kind of loss. So again, take care of yourself. You deserve it,  and it’s good to model self-care to your kids. Pretending to be happy and #InstaChristmasFakeHappy doesn't help us. You won't kill Christmas if you let yourself feel how you feel. It's OK. 
  • Be aware of and try to avoid ads. If you haven't already, I suggest you turn on your ad blocker right now on your browser.  It's up there in the right hand corner.  We are being bombarded by confident expert sounding voices telling us what we ‘need’. None of it is true. 
We want some things, and we need other things. What we need isn't for sale in BT's. Indeed, I sincerely hope you already have some or all of what you need.
With warmest wishes for Christmas and the New Year!

Sally O’Reilly is a Psychologist, Psychotherapist & Clinical Supervisor in private practice in East Cork with twenty years’ full time experience. She has a special interest in working with teenagers. For more info contact her through her site or on Twitter @psychosal or FB Sally O'Reilly Psychology & Psychotherapy.