Throughout the end-of-year holidays, it’s easy to think of everyone except yourself. But this festive time of year can be more merry and bright than ever if you carve out some time for you. Here are five tips for practicing self-care during the holidays.

Take extra care of yourself when traveling

For many of us, the holidays require some form of traveling. If you’re navigating the airports during this chaotic time of year or trying to avoid rush hour on your road trip, there are some simple self-care techniques you can take with you. On a flight, try some breathing exercises so that you can feel more grounded or splurge on a sheet mask to show your skin some love in the dry cabin. During your road trip, take some breaks to stretch or set yourself up with your favorite playlist or podcast to help the time pass. When you reach your destination, you’ll be that much more prepared to dive into the holiday magic. 

Embrace the spirit of giving and treat yourself

Your shopping list needs one more person: you! The holidays are all about giving, so don’t forget about yourself. Buy that book that’s been on your reading list for months (and actually read it) or book a spa appointment to help you relax in between the festive dinners and shopping trips on your agenda. 

Say “no” to overbooking

For many of us, the holidays are known for being a little hectic. If you’re the kind of person who says “yes” to every event for the sake of others’ happiness, it’s time to start prioritizing your own joy and well-being. Commit to self-care during the holidays and avoid overbooking yourself by politely declining any get-togethers that don’t reasonably fit in your schedule. We promise missing one gift swap or baking party doesn’t make you a bad friend. 

Make room for physical activity

If you’re feeling the winter blues, exercise can help. Regular physical activity not only reduces stress, it boosts your serotonin and dopamine levels, two hormones that regulate mood and increase happiness. Prioritize your mental health and carve out time for a brisk walk or a fitness class at a local gym or studio. You’ll get that much-deserved “me time” we mentioned earlier.

Engage the senses

Remain mindful throughout this hectic time of year by creating an environment that looks, tastes, feels, and smells amazing. To practice self-care during the holidays, stay in your cozy pajamas a little longer than usual in the mornings, light some scented candles, or sip on your favorite warm drink (tea or hot chocolate, anyone?). As you navigate your busy schedule, starting or ending your day with the things you love will help keep you grounded. 

The Gympass team wishes you a happy (and relaxing) holiday season. If your company offers Gympass, begin your free 7-day trial and start exploring gyms and studios near you.