From the blog: Eight Ways to Love Yourself When the Holidays Left You Feeling Unloved Once we’re beyond the rush of Christmas, it’s not unusual to feel a little let-down. Those post holiday blues, so to speak. But the thing is, often women feel something beyond the blues. It’s as if you give and give to everyone else, but by the time the New Year approaches, you’re left feeling wrung out. And frankly, like no one else loves you. That’s why, darling, it’s important to take steps to love yourself.
Because despite how much we can give to our families, it often doesn’t feel reciprocated. You feel taken advantage of or as if you aren’t a priority for anyone. Which is why it’s super important to make yourself a priority to YOU. While I know this is easier said than done, when you take some concrete actions to remind you that even when you feel unloved and unappreciated, there is someone that always loves you: YOU.
Here’s eight ways to love yourself after the holidays have left you feeling kinda blah.
One – Buy That Thing You Wanted for Christmas
Yes, I know you gave everyone hints. Or even came right out and said “I want THIS for Christmas!” Yet, no one delivered. And yes, I know that you got your hubby that video game he wanted along with a new leather jacket. I also know that Santa delivered everything your kiddo had on her wish-list, including the hard-to-find Little People Frozen Castle.
I know that you really believed that if your husband/best friend/mom/sister/daughter got that one special thing for you, then you’d feel loved and appreciated. And while buying it yourself may not give you the feeling you wanted to experience come Christmas morning, sugarplum, it’s time to stop waiting for others to give you what you want. It’s time to love yourself enough to give it to yourself. So, buy the purse, coat, necklace, etc for your own damned self.
Two – Invest in Something that will Upgrade the Quality of Your Daily Life
Is there any particular area of your life that feels lacking? Or a moment in your day that can use an upgrade? As a way of choosing to love yourself, upgrade it. Buy the espresso maker if you want to enjoy a nice latte at home. Purchase the lighted make-up mirror if you want to have a better experience putting on your make-up. And invest in a beautiful set of dishes to feel a little spoiled when you eat your dinner.
This can go to experiences as well as items. If you have a long commute every day, find a new podcast to inspire you. Or subscribe to Audible. If writing in your journal is something you want to do more of, find a pen you love to write with. And find a journal that you love writing in. Though we often overlook the little things, they go a long way in improving our mundane, everyday experiences.
When you invest in little ways to make your daily life more beautiful and pleasurable, you’ll find that it’s easier to love yourself no matter how tough times may get.
Three – Schedule a Mental Health Day within the Next Six Weeks
One of the biggest complaints I hear from women is that they have no time to themselves. So, love yourself enough to remedy that. Schedule a vacation day on a random Thursday in February. Or a Tuesday in March. And actually take time to just chill out.
Do not keep the kiddos home from school. And no, don’t tell your dear hubby to take off that day, too. Rather, it’s about having a day to do whatever you desire to do: go to a movie, get a manicure, or sit on your couch with a novel all day.
Four – Schedule a Lunch Date with your BFF
There’s something about spending time with our girlfriends that lifts us up and allows us to feel loved, nourished, and important. And, if you can manage it, as a way to love yourself – and your dearest friends – schedule a girl’s getaway. Science tells us that spending time with long term friends improves our mental health and boots our feel-good hormones.
Besides, who but our BFF can we confess how rotten the holidays felt? It can be the mirror we need to remind ourselves how important we really are in the scheme of our world. Our friends can help remind is to do the work to love ourselves. And mirror that back to them.
Five – Make Note of Less than Stellar Experiences
For the love of all that his holy, if you had a rotten experience this holiday season, ensure you don’t next year. Did you hate the office Christmas Party? Make a note on your calendar for next November to decline the invitation. Did your sister-in-law make Thanksgiving a big drama fest? Write yourself a reminder right now to do something else for Thanksgiving next year. Oh. And if you discovered that come December 1st you were too tired to do any more Christmas shopping, make a note to begin shopping in September.
Also, make a note on the day after Labor Day to schedule all your appointments for the holidays: haircut, manicure, eyebrow wax, and more.
When we are further away from an event, we tend to forget the crappy moments. Dig into your memory now and as a way of loving yourself, ensure you don’t repeat untenable situations next year. Avoiding them can go a long way to feeling more loved and nourished in the next holiday season.
Six – Get Rid of Crap You Don’t Really Love or Need
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in more than a decade of being a life coach it’s that clutter gets in the way of us loving ourselves and our lives. So, set a timer for twenty minutes, grab a trash bag, and go through one area of your home. I like starting with my closet or bedroom. Toss stuff you don’t love, doesn’t fit, or you don’t need into the bag.
Though this may not seem like a way to love yourself, what you’re doing is shedding what’s in the way. Excess stuff distracts us from living our best lives. And when you’re already feeling unloved and unappreciated, having stuff you don’t need in the way can bring you down.
Seven – Upgrade One Item in Your Make-up Bag
After having teenager daughters, I know how adding to their make-up collection can make their holiday. But how about yours? Though it may feel as if putting on make-up every day is a waste of time, in all honesty, it’s a way to boost your confidence. So, rather than put on the same, old, cheapie make-up day in and day out, upgrade something. Maybe it’s a better wearing foundation or new blusher. Perhaps it’s the investment in an eye shadow palate that pops. Or maybe it’s finally buying a red lipstick that makes you feel on top of the world.
Choosing better quality make-up can go a long way into feeling like you love yourself instead of just tolerate yourself. Ya know?
Eight – Make a List of All the Ways You Are Awesome
Though I’d love to tell you that a conversation with your spouse or kiddos is the path to feeling more loved and appreciated, in all honesty, happiness and love of self is an inside job. To bolster your opinion of yourself, make a list of all the ways you are an awesome human being. If it’s helpful, remind yourself of all of your triumphs through the years. The first prize in the science fair when you were in fifth grade to being the only one to ace the first college exam.
Write these things down. By hand. A big, long list of all the ways you rock. This allow you to remember that you are worthy of love, affection, and kudos even when you’re feeling taking advantage of by others. Because the truth is what you think of yourself matters more than anything else. Especially when it comes to being able to love yourself.
While not everyone can have the holiday of their dreams – because reality – that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a way to love yourself no matter how rotten your holidays felt.
I know we want to have perfect holidays. And ones where we feel loved, cherished, and incredibly important. However, the reality of life is that things will fall short of our expectations. When you make the decision to love yourself no matter how others behave, you’ll find that life feels so much better. So, end the holidays with a bang and find ways to love yourself. You’ll be ever grateful now. And next year, too.