I love giving to others, whether the perfectly curated gift, my time and attention, or simply love. Isn’t it the best?
But we don’t often think of giving to ourselves. While we may consider the gifts on our list, or how we hope others will behave for our benefit, giving to ourselves rarely comes to mind. And when it does, it’s usually an impulse purchase (like, at Target, right?!) that we justify as “deserving” it rather than something intentional.
So, I’ve gathered five ideas of valuable gifts to give to yourself this season:
- A time out: It’s not just for misbehaving kids! Select a period of time and schedule it, just for you. Whether it’s ten minutes or four hours, and however you choose to spend it, doesn’t matter. What’s important is that it feels like a treat to you.
- A good life: This year I read Mark Manson’s book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F$ck. A provocative title to be sure, but what really hits home is the subtitle: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life. He offers a fresh look at living grounded, contented lives, not needing to always think positive (buyer beware: he uses the F-Word a lot).
- Permission: What for? What do you think? Seriously. Consider where you need to give yourself permission. Maybe to stay home from a party that feels like a chore. Or to say no to baking cookies for some “really important function.” Possibly to use the wrapping paper you have on hand rather than search for the perfectly coordinated set this year.
- Breathe: Practice slow, deep breathing through the nostrils. This activates the parasympathetic nervous system, particularly important during times of high stress. Use it to decompress at your desk or while lying in bed to induce sleep. If you’re interested in more about breathing, Ed Harrold has a Life with Breath podcast that delves deep into the subject of breath as medicine.
- Want what you have: Look at your home, your closet, your car…all your possessions. Look at them anew, remembering how excited you were when you first purchased – or were gifted – them. Want them all over again. It’s the best feeling, and costs no money. And for those things you no longer desire, let them be a gift to someone else.
I know you’re generous with others. My hope this season is that you’ll extend that same graciousness to yourself, that you will give to yourself. Because you deserve it.
P.S. Another gift you can give yourself is to revisit my 3 tips to avoid overeating and other “regrets” this holiday. 🙂