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Mental Health

Here’s to Me: A Guide to Self-Love During the Holidays

We have officially entered the time of year when T.J. Maxx and HomeGoods have been transformed into a winter wonderland and the sweet smell of salted caramel candles fills up the room. During the holidays, you spend your free time trying to plan the most delicious dish to serve or the most eye-watering gift to give, leaving you feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Sometimes when people use all their energy to give, give, give to everyone around them, they tend to neglect the most important person in their life: themselves. 

Have you ever been out looking for gifts for others and you see something you want, but you don’t buy it because you think to yourself, “I’m not here for me?” If you answered yes, you need to remember that you can be a giver and still give to yourself. So this holiday season, when you are creating your mile-long shopping list, here are a few things to wrap up and give to yourself that HomeGoods or T.J. Maxx can’t compete with:

The gift of gratitude

The holidays are trademarked for being the time to give thanks to those around you, for what others have given you and what you have given yourself. Even if the holidays look different for everyone, it is important to train yourself to foster an attitude of gratitude in all you do; being mindful of the many small and large things in life that enrich you physically, emotionally and spiritually. Take time for yourself to reflect and ask,“What have I done to take good care of myself this year and who/what has supported me in doing so?”

The gift of grounding

The holidays can bring a whirlwind of emotions, whether it’s stress, loneliness, frustration or fatigue. To defeat the holiday blues, give yourself some grounding techniques that help you get out of that overwhelmed state. Grounding techniques are a form of mindfulness, which helps you bring conscious attention to your surroundings that help you pull back from intense emotions. Taking deep breaths, listening to music and imagining your favorite vacation spot are all ways to create mental space in a stressful moment.

The gift of self-kindness

The person you should be most thankful for this holiday season is you. Be thankful for all the time and energy your body and mind have put toward yourself this year. Carve some time out to give back to yourself; do things like take a bubble bath, bake some sweets, exercise or even take yourself on a date. Be kind to yourself this holiday season, and share it with the world.

With the added stress of the holidays, it can be easy to forget how strong and capable you are in so many ways. There are so many necessary gifts you can give yourself, not only during the holidays but throughout the year. Make taking care of yourself your favorite part of the season. Make the best eye-watering gift you give out this year be to yourself.

Kate Haas

Virginia Tech '23

Kate is a junior studying Multimedia Journalism at Virginia Tech. She is a curly-haired dreamer wanting to empower women with her writing. She is a proud member of Her Campus VT and a happy hokie!
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