When I had a regular job (i.e., a regular paycheck vs. the wildly erratic income of a self-employed person), I loved to shop. I shopped with abandon all year long. Okay, not really. But I definitely spent way more on myself than I am willing to now. After ten years of working for myself it's impossible to look at a pair of pants without calculating how many hours I have to work to pay for them. And then descend into a never-ending spiral of questioning about whether the pants - THESE pants - will be worth it. Will they last? Will they stretch out in the butt after I wear them for a few hours? Will the tailor cut them too short and ruin them before they've even been worn once? How long do I have to keep them to make it worth my while? Will I lose weight or gain weight and make them unwearable before that time? WWQBS (What Would QuickBooks Say?) And then I just buy another pair of running pants and call it a day. But I digress.
THE POINT IS THIS: In those days - when I was more casual with my money - I did a "thing" when I Christmas shopped - for every present I bought for someone else, I threw a few small things in for myself. And that made holiday shopping so much more enjoyable. It's also a way to please yourself instead of hoping someone else will do it. And I'm not sure that's such a bad thing. What if a miracle occurred and the universe did a reverse Christmas thing and you got to spend everything you usually spend on other people on things you really want for yourself? How much happier would you be? I know, right?
Here are my thoughts on ways to treat yourself this holiday season:
Guerlain Météorites Pearls are a blend luminescent face powders. You need this. I have the compact and the full-size set. They smell delicious and do amazing things for every skin tone. Every time you use them it is an escape from your everyday world into...I don't know...a walk down the Champs-Élysées or something. Actually, the Champs is not my favorite champs in Paris. My favorite champs is the Champs de Mars.
Go ahead and yourself that thing you've been wanting that will make your everyday world a little bit more efficient or [sucks breath in] more fun. My husband travels four or five days a week. On the weekends he cooks me an amazing breakfast - sometimes two or even three courses. We've been wanting a waffle maker for some time but we don't technically *need* a waffle maker. Until we bought this Waring Pro professional and found out that we do need a waffle maker. We've been making vegan waffles like crazy for weeks now and we love them. I'm glad a spent a little more than I had intended, because this $100 model is super easy to use and clean. No regrets. AND it's the gift that keeps on giving.
You might not want a waffle maker - but maybe you need a professional hairdryer so you can get ready for work in alot less time. Or maybe you need a new lamp because your bedroom is dark and it stresses you out while you read trashy novels. It's that thing you need but can't ask people to buy for you because it's too ridiculous. Whatever it is - go get it.
When I'm stressed out I try to map out what would make me feel better. Do I need a good, healthy dinner? Some time with friends? A workout? It's usually all those things plus a massage. Because massage is the only thing I can do where I can be "checked out" while I recharge, it's usually my go-to stress reliever in times of trouble. The holidays are stressful. There's the shopping, the money, the relatives, the old family issues, the new family issues, the loneliness, the wanting. What are you going to do to get away from all that? If its a massage - book one. If it is something else, then do that.
Let yourself "off the hook." Without consulting anyone and without second-guessing yourself. Decide that you're not going to do whatever the things that make you miserable this holiday season. Stay in a hotel or with a friend instead of sleeping on a cot in your brother's moldy basement. Spend what you can afford on gifts instead of feeling pressured into spending to please others (because if they aren't pleased with what you have to offer - they never will be.) Stay home instead of driving six hours in snow and ice to have a miserable dinner with miserable relatives. Yes, you can.
Buy yourself a bottle of Apathy aromatherapy mood spray. It's a good scent to try if you're not sure which mood spray to purchase first. It's also my personal favorite. I love the pink grapefruit scent. Run a hot bath and mist the mood spray into the steamy air until you feel better. It really does help. One of the gifts I'm giving myself this year is a custom, off-label mood spray that is just for me - not for you guys. I think it's going to include eucalyptus and lemon essential oils.
How do you cope with holiday stress? Do you buy gifts for yourself? Have you changed the way you give to or spend time with family?