By Chandrama Anderson
E-mail Chandrama Anderson
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ... (More)
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in Silicon Valley for 15 years before becoming a therapist. My background in high-tech is helpful in understanding local couples' dynamics and the pressures of living here. I am a wife, mom, sister, friend, author, and lifelong advocate for causes I believe in (such as marriage equality). My parents are both deceased. My son graduated culinary school and is heading toward a degree in Sociology. I enjoy reading, hiking, water fitness, movies, 49ers and Stanford football, Giants baseball, and riding a tandem bike with my husband. I love the beach and mountains; nature is my place of restoration. In my work with couples, and in this blog, I combine knowledge from many fields to bring you my best ideas, tips, tools and skills, plus book and movie reviews, and musings to help you be your genuine self, find your own voice, and have a happy and healthy relationship. Don't be surprised to hear about brain research and business skills, self-soothing techniques from all walks of life, suggestions and experiments, and anything that lights my passion for couples. (Author and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Calif. Lic # MFC 45204.) (Hide)
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These holiday tips are not rocket science. Nonetheless, they are important reminders for good self-care and pacing through the holidays.
1. Make a list of your "family of choice" and spend time with them. Some people on your list may also be your family of origin. Make time to be alone, too, if that suits your fancy. Introverts can be overwhelmed with the social nature of the holidays. Allow time alone to recharge your batteries.
2. Volunteer. There are so many important and worthy opportunities to offer your time and care. The Norman Rockwell holidays don't exist for many people; it's easy to feel lonely or isolated. What does it mean to you to give to others and be of service?
3. Exercise. Between the endorphins we generate and the stress reduction, we'll be better able to not only face the season, but to enjoy it. Maybe even try a new form of exercise.
4. Make a list of your favorite activities, and choose a few to do. I like to go to the beach when it's stormy and watch the waves.
5. Eat and drink well (meaning healthy, in addition to the holiday treats). Drink lots of water. Remember that alcohol is a depressant.
6. Get a massage/take a bubble bath/get outdoors. Treat your body with love and care.
7. Play! This will be whatever you consider fun; ping-pong, sports, puzzles, etc. Consider taking a break from "screen time" to have time to imagine and let ideas seep into you.
8. Focus on gratitude. What is working well in your life? Who do you love? Tell them specific things you're grateful for about them.
9. Slow down; say "No" at times. It's easy to rush around at work, in our cars, shopping, from party to party. Slow down. Breathe deeply. Leave five minutes early so you're not in a rush. It's okay to say no to people, places, and things. "No" is a complete sentence.
10. Get support if you need it. When your car is making noises do you take it in or wait until it breaks down in a questionable spot?
Treat yourself well. You deserve it. Happy Holidays.