Inside the article: Traveling over the holidays adds a level of stress to an already demanding season. As a mom, you might find traveling the opposite of relaxing as you manage not only yourself but your littles as well. Here are 5 quick ideas for how to squeeze in some self-care as a mom while traveling over the holidays.
Traveling for the holidays is pretty foreign to me. Nearly every Thanksgiving and Christmas in my family were spent at our home, and if others wanted to join, they would come our way. Honestly, it was great! We established so many traditions and the phrase “Home for the Holidays” really rung true.
This was until I got married!
My husband’s family lives out of state, and they are used to spending EVERY holiday together. Typically, everyone travels north to my husband’s aunt’s home, so he has the opposite experience to me. He rarely spent the holidays in his own home!
Talk about conflict.
As a married couple, you make compromises, so we have landed on spending every other holiday with my husband’s whole crew. This means years of holiday travel ahead for me!
Going into someone else’s space can create a lot of tension and stress. Not only is your routine off kilter, but your normal ways of relaxing, coping, and de-stressing might not be available to you.
More ideas? Sign up for my newsletter to get exclusive tips and seasonal favorites.
Fret not, my mama friend! Here are 5 quick ways you can practice self-care as a mom while traveling during the holidays.
1. Ask for Time Away
While you may not be able to go far, it is vital to take space for yourself. What a perfect time to get some space when you have free babysitting! I know my husband’s mom is desperate to hang out with our son, and I will gladly hand him over so I can have some time by myself.
Spend some time on an available patio. Read a book in bed. Listen to a podcast and take a walk. Whatever you do, make sure it’s something that will revitalize you and fill you up. If you want to add some holiday cheer, put on some Christmas music and do a little online shopping for gifts (didn’t say for who 😉 ).
2. Grab a Holiday Coffee
Going on an errand can get you some space while also treating yourself. Offer to grab some for the whole family, and take a little longer than you need. Sometimes, doing something nice for others while also meeting your own needs for caffeine can fill up your cup (pun intended).
To get into the holiday spirit, be sure to try out one of the many holiday options, like a Peppermint Mocha, a Pumpkin Spice Latte or just a simple hot cocoa. It’s amazing how a taste or smell can put you into a holiday mood.
3. Stay in Your Comfys
The second I get home from a long day, I put on my “comfys.” This includes a pair of cozy sweats, a loose T-shirt, and my hair up in a ponytail. It’s my favorite way to get into relax mode.
The holidays are one occasion where staying in pajamas all day is acceptable. If you’re not a holiday print kind of lady, invest in a quality pair of neutral joggers or a soft onesie. (Yes, onesie! If you haven’t felt the magic, you’re missing out.) Give yourself permission to hang out in your comfys all day to keep your mind in a relaxing state.
4. Take a Social Media Break
Social media, especially around the holidays, can be a joy-sucker. It’s so easy to feel envy over someone else’s depiction of their holiday experience. “Wow, Julie’s turkey looks way better than mine” or “Her husband got her WHAT for Christmas?!” No good!!
Spend your hiatus practicing gratitude. Be thankful for what you have in the holiday season, and recognize that while it’s likely not perfect, it’s yours and it’s special.
5. Set Boundaries
The holidays can put out unrealistic expectations. Whether it’s creating the most Pinterest-worthy Thanksgiving spread or having the most perfect presents under the tree. Not to mention how much time the family is used to spending together or what activities you all do.
To practice self-care, set boundaries. I preach boundaries to everyone because without boundaries, people won’t know what you need and will likely cross them without knowing. During the holidays, you might consider how much you are willing to do. “Sorry, I can’t make the mashed potatoes right now, but I can help with dessert,” “No, I’d rather stay home instead of going to the Turkey Trot,” or “I just need a little bit of space right now.”
Self-Care While Traveling During the Holidays
While it’s challenging, prioritizing your self-care can drastically improve your travel experience. You will be able to prioritize your needs and be able to enjoy your experience knowing you have open communication.
Want more? Sign up for my newsletter for more mommy mental health tips!