A Holiday Love Letter
Dearest Sisters in Perimenopause, Menopause, and Post-menopause,
It’s the season of giving—and boy, are you good at giving! All the work and worry over everyone else’s wish lists may leave you energy-drained and your tank empty. You deserve so much more out of your holidays!
That’s why self-care is the most important thing you can give when it comes to the holidays. After all, you can’t take care of anyone else until you first take care of YOU. It’s like the airplane emergency procedure: Put on your oxygen mask before helping others. Everyone’s safety depends on it.
You can do this! Here are three simple tips to help you put happiness at the top of your wish list and start planning to deliver. In the end, you are the only person who can give you the health and happiness you deserve.
Stop being your biggest critic!
While easier said than done, you need to realize that during perimenopause, menopause, and post-menopause, you might not have the energy you had in the past. You don’t need to have as much energy as your grandchildren. Scale back on your stressors: Make your holiday dinner a potluck; use gift sacks, not wrapping paper; and dial back on the décor. I also suggest shopping online. You can escape the crowded malls and heavy shopping bags and hit every store on your schedule from the comfort of your couch. If a gift for YOU sneaks its way into your online cart — no sweat — you deserve it!
We need to set another thing straight: The photoshopped holiday pictures you see on social media and magazines are not always realistic. These often over-the-top staged photos are choreographed by crews of professionals and can steal your joy. Your holidays don’t have to be picture-perfect for them to be great. No-frills holidays are some of the best ones! After all, the holidays are most importantly about gratitude and the people you love and care about. Let go of all the pressure this season!
Still, no matter how much you trim the fat off your holiday stressors, some will pop up here and there. Perimenopause, menopause, and post-menopause can be stressful, even without extra holiday to-dos and expectations. Find time to unwind: Book a massage, take a bubble bath and stop making excuses not to exercise (it’s one of the healthiest and most effective ways to reduce stress). After all, stress can trigger hot flashes, impede sleep, spur menopausal migraines, and wreck your holidays. Check out more tips for fighting menopausal stress!
Stop Stress Eating!
I know this is hard when sugar cookies, mashed potatoes, and holiday parties abound! While a little nibble here and there is undoubtedly okay (super-strict diets are stressful, and we don’t like that!), unhealthy eating can cause mood swings. Fatty foods can wreck both your mind and body. According to the National Council of Mental Wellbeing, high intakes of unhealthy, processed carbohydrates can cause blood sugars to rise and fall quickly, leading to low energy and irritability.
Meanwhile, they cause us to pack on the pounds, and I don’t have to tell you that when the buttons start popping on last year’s holiday sweaters, your stress meter rises faster than the needle on your scale. The result is more weight and a worse mood. You can do better.
So, my generous sisters, this season, start being generous to YOU! Give yourself the gifts you deserve, self-care, respect, and love!
I wish you the happiest, merriest, and healthiest holiday season ever!
Remember: Suffering in silence is OUT! Reaching out is IN.
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*EllenDolgen.com does not recommend, endorse, or make any representation about any tests, studies, practices, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, healthcare providers, physicians, or medical institutions that may be mentioned or referenced.
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