Best Gifts to Give Yourself This Season

Seven different gifts for yourself this season.

Photo by PxHere

Seven different gifts for yourself this season.

It’s the season of giving, decorating, and celebrating! December can get pretty busy with all of the holiday activities. The holiday season is a time to feel happy, but you shouldn’t force yourself to be happy just because everyone else is. Your holiday season can be fun and exciting by finding a real reason to be happy for yourself. 

I believe a great way to brighten your mood and find happiness is by giving. Giving gifts is not just for other people, but also yourself. Not all gifts come in a wrapped box with ribbon, but can be things that help you mentally and emotionally. Below are some of my top favorite mental health gifts to give yourself this season.

Dress for success. When you get up in the morning, put in more effort and time than usual to get ready. Even if you’re staying home, you can still dress up! Dressing nice or fun can help you feel more confident and energize your day. It can give you at least one reason to feel accomplished and start your day off with a more positive attitude. 

Try something new. Trying new things spices up life! Whether that is participating in a new activity, trying new foods, watching a different show, or reading a new book. You will never know if you like something if you don’t try it. Jaime James, a Bingham art teacher, discussed how stepping out of her comfort zone has rewarded her. “As I progressed in art, I moved out of my comfort zone and tried new ways of creating.  This has helped me to learn more about myself and to better accept my own uniqueness,” James said.

Make time to search and balance your feelings. Some great ways to do this are to meditate consistently, focus on breathing, write in a journal, and participate in muscle relaxation and yoga. There are several guided meditation and yoga sessions you can find through different apps and even YouTube! Balancing your feelings will help bring your attention back to the present so you can enjoy time with friends and family. It can also help you live in the moment so you can fully appreciate doing the things you love. 

Take breaks and have productive alone time. For every 30 minute increments of working, I normally like my breaks to last around 15 minutes. One thing I would suggest is not scrolling through social media and being on your phone while you take breaks. Change up your scenery and activity during your break. It can calm your mind, so you can work more productively in the future.

Use art or creativity to express yourself when words can’t. It can be difficult to share your feelings with others. You don’t have to be a great artist to use this technique. Just simply create something that helps represent what you feel. Some fun ideas are coloring, painting, drawing, scrapbooking, sewing, and taking pictures. “Creating art can help you discover things about yourself that you might not have realized were there. It can provide a way to express difficult emotions.  It can allow a person to release stuck emotions that are carried inside,” said James.

Get up and move! Moving around helps keep your body healthy. This takes stress off your mind and allows for clearer thinking. There are so many fun winter activities to participate in such as skiing, snowboarding, hiking, ice skating, sledding, snowball fights, etc. Just bundling up and having fun in the snow is another way to get outside even though it is cold. In the end, you can always top it off with a nice cup of hot chocolate.

Volunteer or participate in service activities safely. You can find volunteer opportunities with the food bank and even participate in True Blue. Helping other people also heals yourself and brightens your mood. Volunteering may be difficult with COVID-19, but you can still reach out to those you interact with through text, video calls, or Christmas cards. A great service opportunity is the Angel Card Project that several Bingham students have already participated in. Alonzo Kennedy, a Bingham student who participated in the Angel Card Project, said, “I really enjoyed it because I found a couple people I could really connect with, and I knew that if I took a small amount of time out of my day I could greatly help someone out… It’s something simple I can do that can have a huge and lasting impact.”

I hope that at least one of these ideas will be something that you can do this holiday season! Find a real reason that this season can be happy and special for you. It has already been a tough year and you have survived it! Take time to end 2020 on a high note.