Mags pouring white wine down the sink

Prioritizing Self Care During the Holidays – Permission to Keep Myself on the List

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One of my favorite quotes from Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism is, “If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.” For Miss Martyr Mags, prioritizing self care during the holidays can feel indulgent, bratty, and–let’s just go ahead and use the apex of shame-infused adjectives here–selfish. This ludicrous old directive can pop into my head like Mother Superior at an all girls’ catholic school in 1967, arbitrating, “Good girls put everyone else’s needs first. Then, if there’s time leftover, and only if there’s time leftover, then you can use that time to do something for yourself.” Well, to hell with that crap! I’m a big girl now, and as all of us big girls out there know, there is almost ne-ver time leftover. The good news is, I’m an adult now and no longer have to swallow that cluster of corrupted Christmas crap. 

Now that we got that out of the way, I want to acknowledge how my harmless sips turn into slides down the nope-slope. As lists get longer, the things I do for myself feel like the easiest “do’s” to remove. You see, it always starts with “sips”: a missed walk here, a late night there, but then it’s greasy grab-and-go food EVERYWHERE! Before I know it, Team, I haven’t walked in a week, I’m staying up late every night, and I’m in a whimper wonderland of the Christmas Crabbies I just can’t shake.

For whatever reason, I constantly need reminding that I have full permission to keep myself on the list no. matter. what. Prioritizing myself is what’s best for me, it’s what’s best for the temperamental teens, and it’s certainly the safest decision for my marriage. So, rather than skipping over the things I do to take care of myself for some half-baked holiday hustle, I can remember that the time I spend on connection with myself and others is precisely what brings the joy into the season for me. Connection is the merry moxie that fuels my Christmas spirit, Team. That reminder can slip from my memory when I’m flooded by external influences that are less interested in my belief in the magic of the holidays and more interested in my belief that I should be buying more, doing more, and decking more halls. 

This feels like the perfect time to all stop what you’re doing, take out our planners, and make for damn sure Fend for Yourself Day is in pen in the family calendar for December 26th. Never heard of this made-up holiday? Well, I’ll put a link in the show notes so you can learn all about it. And if you don’t have time to listen now, just know that TeamConfessioners celebrate it every year on December 26th. It’s a day to sit on the couch and completely relax and allow all of the people, big and small in our homes, to completely fend for themselves. It’s an in-house day off, if you will…and we WILL, oh we will—right Team?! And remember…I just can’t hear this Greg McKeown quote enough, “If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.”

Next week I’d like to talk with you about high heels. What’s a gal who wears sneakers 90% of the time have to say about high heels? Actually, very important stuff—so please tune in next week to find out!

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    Welcome to my blog! Here you can read about what’s on my mind as I try my best to recover from screaming at my kids and nagging the bejesus out my husband.

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