SELF CARE DURING THE HOLIDAYS

The holidays can be a wonderful time of year, but for many they can be stressful. As a ministry leader your own wellness is vitally important.  It is important to remember to make self-care a priority.
 
This will also help you to support your family and church/ministry members as they deal with increased stress and anxiety.  You will also find an assessment you can review that will help you monitor your need for self care.
 
 

RELAX – During your day take small breaks. Get comfortable, take in deep breaths and then exhale slowly. Let your shoulders drop and relax.

REST – Make sure that each night you get a sufficient amount of rest.  Catching up on sleep is not possible.  You need consistent rest every night.

WATCH YOUR EMOTIONS – Don’t allow your emotional self to get unbalanced.  Monitor your emotions and allow time to process those emotions rationally.

TALK RATIONALLY TO YOURSELF – Ask yourself if the stressful situation is your problem or if the problem belongs to someone else. If the problem is someone else’s then let it go. If the problem is yours then approach it calmly. Remember to give yourself a break. Watch out for perfectionism. Rather than focus on what you could have done, plan for how you can handle the situation next time.

GET ORGANIZED – Staying organized during the holidays can prove to be difficult. Our tasks during the holidays seem to double with buying gifts, decorating, wrapping gifts, etc. Set a realistic schedule for your daily activities and include the time you need for rest, relationships/family, and fun time. Then stick to it!

EXERCISE – Exercise has always proven to relieve stress. Find a physical activity that you enjoy and do it on a regular basis in order to reduce the effects of stress.

REDUCE TIME URGENCY – If you find yourself constantly on the run or running late, learn to slow things down and plan your time better. Allow yourself plenty of time to get each activity completed, plan your schedule ahead of time and have realistic expectations of how much you can do.

QUIET TIME – Allow yourself quiet time. Whether that is spending time on a hobby or taking a nice long bubble bath. Balance your life in order to give yourself some quiet time alone. 

WATCH YOUR HABITS – During times of stress or when our schedules are really busy we tend to not eat sensibly. Fast food is so much easier because it’s fast, but a balanced diet will give you energy to make it through your day.  You may find yourself running toward other non-productive habits.  Stop and refocus!

TALK TO YOUR FRIENDS – Talking to others helps relieve our stress. Being social, sharing feelings or talking through our problems with a friend can reduce our stress.

REACH OUT FOR HELP – Talk with a professional.  The Life Recovered staff of Masters Level Biblical Counselors are ready to talk with you in the office or online.

Lastly, remember that it is not selfish to focus on your own needs and desires when you are a caregiver/minister-it’s an important part of the job, and you are the only one that can be responsible for your own self-care.

Adapted – Sante’ Center

 

ASSESSING YOUR OWN SELF CARE Ministry leaders are notorious for not taking care of themselves.  We spend a great deal of time pouring into the lives of others but not enough time investing in the spiritual, physical, psychological, emotional and relational aspects of our own lives.  This course of action will lead to burn out, poor choices, broken relationships and other damaging life issues.   Here’s a survey that you can take to see how well you are doing.

Ministry Leaders Self-Care Assessment Worksheet