Christmas break is coming up...YAY!! I've always looked forward to Christmas break!! Christmas break is full of board games, movies, hot chocolate, Christmas cookies, Christmas lights, and Christmas music!! What's not to love?!?!
Growing up I always thought that's what Christmas break was like for everyone, but since I've started working in schools I've learned that Christmas break can mean a lot of different things to kids. For some kids it means babysitting younger siblings for two weeks. For some it means two weeks of hearing your parents fighting. For some it can be a reminder of those they've lost over the years. Christmas break isn't always something kids look forward to, which is heart breaking!!
So I've been thinking about how I can help cheer up some of my kids over the Christmas break, and that's when I came up with the "12 Days of Self Care". Self care is any activity that helps take care of your mental, emotional, or physical well being. It sounds like a simple concept, but it's not always that easy. As adults we tend to say things like "I don't have time for that" or "I need to help take care of the children first" or "I just need to finish this project". Adults are full of excuses for not taking care of themselves. It's hard to find time, but really it's hard to justify spending time on ourselves. We're looking at self care in the wrong way, the truth is we deserve a little time to ourselves and taking a break can make us more productive in the long run.
Self care with students is a little different from adults. Most students have plenty of time for self care, but they don't know what to do. When I ask a student what cheers them up when they're sad, sometimes they really don't know. Luckily I have a massive list of ideas in my office and we create a self care plan together.
So back to Christmas break...I believe one of the best ways for me to help students over the holidays is to encourage them to take care of themselves each and every day!! If you're looking for ways to encourage students or maybe you need some encouragement this holiday season, feel free to download the 12 Days of Self Care here.