Friday, November 12, 2021

Self-Care Tips for the Busiest Season of the Year




BySarah Geringer 


And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.

James 3:18 NLT



The end of the year is only seven weeks away. It includes Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve. Now, in mid-November, it's good for us to pause, take a deep breath and make a self-care plan before the busy season begins.

In the years I have not made a good self-care plan, I suffered. Surges of stress hormones stole my peace, disrupted my sleep and sparked immune system flares. I've learned the hard way that self-care is not an option in this time of year - it's a requirement as a wife and mother.

To care well for my people, I need to care well for myself. I believe women are the hearts of their homes, and this is no more true than at the end of the year. Our planning, attitudes and service to others will create memories that last a lifetime. But if we're handling this responsibility and privilege with a stressed-out attitude, we'll be peace-busters rather than peacemakers.

We need to fill ourselves with the peace of God so we can share it with others. That's why daily self care is so important in this busy season. Here are the best tips I have for you that I'm using myself:

Practice two minutes of silence per day. This book is helping me sit silently in God's presence each day, and it makes a HUGE difference in my peace level. It's a wonderful time to experience God's love and tell him I love him too.

Slow down and savor something, with praise. I love chocolate, and Ghirardelli hot chocolate made with almond milk is a true delight in this season. Instead of gulping it down in a hurry, like I often do with other drinks, I'm enjoying it slowly and praising God for the wonderful gift of chocolate. You can do this with any food or drink, and it only takes a few minutes.

Sing along to your favorite worship song. I sing in the car on the way to pick up my children from school. The simple act of singing worship songs opens my lungs, throat and heart up with gratitude. It lifts my spirit when I feel weary, and no one hears my imperfect singing but God, who receives it like a sweet incense.

Use a holiday devotional. I have a few new books this year that are helping me journal my thoughts and plan to be a peacemaker at holiday events. These books are like a joyful guide through the season, and I love the pretty pictures in them as well.

Act like a girl again. I've long been a Peanuts fan, and I love watching the Christmas special in my Snoopy pajamas. It's also good to color for fun and decorate homemade cookies, just like I did when I was young. Listening to the Peanuts Christmas soundtrack while completing chores brings out the kid in me and lightens my mood.

If you feel unsure about taking time for self-care in this season, look to Jesus. His ministry schedule still looks busy even by 21st century standards. Yet he took time to connect with his Father through prayer (Luke 5:16) and slowed down to be fully present with others (John 4Matt. 9:18-33). He was intentional about balancing his priorities so he could be the Prince of Peace everywhere he went. He will also empower you to spread peace this season if you fill yourself up in his presence, and practice good self-care, in the busiest season of the year.

Here's a prayer to encourage you too:

Father God,

Thank you for the gift of peace.

I need it in the busiest season of the year, which is almost here.

I want to be a peacemaker instead of a peace-buster this year.

With your help, I can fill myself up with your peace first to share it with others.

Help me practice good self-care so I can be filled with your peace.

May I find greater peace in your presence, Lord.

May I be better prepared to serve others once I practice good self-care.

In Jesus' name,

Amen.


Seeking rest as you prepare for the busy Christmas season? Check out the practical and encouraging tips in my book, Christmas Peace for Busy Moms.


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Have a blessed weekend!


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2 comments:

  1. These are great tips. I spent too many stressed holiday seasons, and it helps to look ahead and prepare.

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  2. I believe women are the hearts of their homes, and this is no more true than at the end of the year. So very true. Take time to enjoy His peace. Cadbury fruit and nut bars are a nice treat. I have been seeing lots of good coloring books and even paint sets with angels, great gifts for others and ourselves.

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