A Challenge: Claim Your Care and A Wellness Prescription

I’ve always had trouble with the holidays. Even as a child, I wasn’t that enthusiastic about them. Yes, I liked the presents part and some of the traditions and routines, but given I am such a creature of comfort and regularity, they tended to take their toll on me.

The rich food made it hard to sleep.

All the people made it hard to sleep.

Are you noticing a theme here?

Generally the loss of routine care got lost in the excitement.

As an adult, I’ve tended to be quite ill during the holidays. Colds, flu, respiratory infections.

Too much stress?

Too much food?

Not enough self-care?

I’m not quite sure of the answer, but I’ve made changes the last couple years to make the month of December more enjoyable {or at least more tolerable}.

This year, I will live with intention to truly take care of myself.

Starting in December, I’m following Rosie’s lead and making myself a wellness prescription and claiming my care.

Specifically I will:

  • Attend every session of Madeleine’s Yoga for Holiday Stress – translation: yoga class FOUR times in December!
  • First thing in the morning, a walk with Ruby – at least 30 minutes
  • Using Madeleine’s Manuel as a guide, I’ll consult my book of me when I’m out of sorts and try to solve my problem.
  • Back to the weight room twice a week – 20 minutes is all I need.
  • Soak, steam, sauna at least once a week – the Church of Quiet awaits.
  • Water, Emergen-C, multivitamin and vitamin D daily.
  • Listen to music – such a pleasure in my life and yet I need a reminder to do this.
  • Connect with my spouse – even if for just a 5 minute hug {Do you do this? If not, try it}.
  • A fruit and a veggie at every meal – remembering if I’m not hungry enough for an apple, I’m not really that hungry.
  • Minimize processed foods.
  • Keeping dairy out of my body – that means no cookies, no cake, no desserts unless they are vegan. {ps – I’m not saying you, dear reader, must say dairy-free, I must}.
  • Reading for pleasure – from a book or magazine – every day.
  • Schedule a massage {or two} before the end of the year.
  • Sleeping at least 7 hours at night – even if that means missing a turn or two in Words With Friends and going to sleep before 10.
  • Being with friends – in person, if possible – seriously, if we don’t have a date already let’s get something scheduled STAT.

What would be on your prescription for wellness? How would you claim your care?

Self-Care Versus the Dreaded Shoulds

My name is Tami and I’m a Should-A-Holic.

This weekend I had some tough choices to make.

Do I spend my limited time away from work doing more work?

-I really should figure out my timed math ‘system’

-I really should spend more time with the math curriculum

-I really should fill-in-the-blank unfinished teacher work

Or do I invest some time in self-care?

Sunday afternoon I found myself having a serious case of the I-don’t-wanna-goes/why-can’t-weekends-be-longers which is what happens when I don’t work on Saturdays.

If I don’t work on Saturdays, I feel compelled to work on Sundays.

Never mind that I worked Monday-Friday.

At my two jobs.

So I consulted the Book of Me.

This weekend I remembered why I wrote the Book of Me in the first place.

It’s so I don’t lose my shit when I go back to work.

See, self-care is much easier when I have less demands on my time.

Of course, I’m going to spend time with friends.

Of course, I’m going to eat healthy food.

Of course, I’m going to go to bed early and get enough rest.

When I’m on break it’s much easier to take good care of myself. It’s when suddenly there are demands on my time that I have to remind myself that even though I am working and have responsibilities, self-care is IMPERATIVE.

My solution? 

To focus on some simple activities that make me happy.

Some things I will add to the Book of Me.

  • Mini-pedi {everything except the polish}
  • Phone date with a lifelong, now long-distance friend
  • reading a book for pleasure {Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage by Elizabeth Gilbert}
  • making an easy, tasty dinner

Let’s be honest, work will always be there.

Time away, truly away to recharge your batteries and enjoy the simple things, is limited.

My friend, Johanna, is taking a whole year off from teaching so she can recharge her batteries, connect with her family and find a place of self-care. She writes about it here.

{click on image for source}

Tell me, how do you take care of yourself when life gets busy?

Downtime Is Not Optional

The way I felt at the end of last weekend’s endless fun-fest prompted me to add another entry to my Book of Me: Downtime is Not Optional.


Don’t get me wrong, I love having fun as much as the next person.

As it turns out, I need some unscheduled hangout-and-do-nothing-time in order to recharge my batteries. I need some built-in recovery time or my body rebels and makes me sick. And you all know how I feel about that.


Many folks are rolling their eyes right now, thinking well I’m just too busy, I’ve got commitments and/or kids and I just can’t afford any down time.


My monsters say those things too.

Here are some more gems from the monster gallery:

  1. Really? 7-9 hours of sleep isn’t enough?
  2. You mean you need to do that EVERY night in order to feel truly rested?
  3. These days, who is really rested?
  4. Can’t you sleep when you’re dead?
  5. Gawd, you really are lazy.
  6. Other people don’t need to rest this much.
  7. Other people get up on Monday morning and never stop running – even on the weekend.
  8. They run their kids all over town and clean house and go to endless sporting events and birthday parties and the never even complain about it.
  9. Other people have kids and commitments and jobs and…. and they are fine. Damnit.
  10.  How are you going to survive when your kid arrives?
  11. I’ve heard kids rob you of all your sleep and you are a constant sleep-deprived zombie.

 Do you see how much my Monsters care about me?

The good news is that my Book of Me, isn’t a book for my monsters.

Or of you.

Just some reminders about what works for ME.

To quote HaviThat’s why it’s the Book of You and not the Book of Humanity In General That Is Also Known As The Book of All Things For All People At All Time.
So in order to honor my research and study of me, I am scheduling a much-needed day of quiet for tomorrow.


PAJAMA DAY to the rescue!

Are your monsters responding to my Pajama Day idea? Are they yelling about how lazy that makes me? Want to join me? All you need to do is STOP for one day and stay in. I’d love some company. I’ll be hanging out on Twitter and Facebook and hulu and Netflix.

What are some things I would find in your book of YOU? What kind of self-care do you do to stay sane?

Image source.In the park on hot day–“played … by The Library of Congress on Flickr