We all want to let our hair down a little at Christmas, but a few simple steps to nurture yourself will mean that you’ll have more energy, more calm and more fun.


Whether you’re a Bailey’s for breakfast fan on Christmas Day, or the one who ends up running about wrapping presents, cooking dinner and generally falling asleep by early evening, we could probably all do with taking care of ourselves a little bit this festive season.


The most powerful things we can do to feel happier and calmer centre around food.


Eat, drink and be hydrated


“None of us want to think about diets or detox at Christmas, but if you want to avoid the horrible physical feeling of overeating and the headaches and tiredness that can come if you have too much sugary food, the most important thing to remember is water,” says nutrition coach Dan Martin of DM Nutrition. “We’ve all heard this, but it simply works. Drinking a large glass of water when you get up and before a meal, or switching to herbal tea means that you are less likely to overeat and more likely to retain good energy levels.


“WIth sugar and chocolate, just don’t go too crazy. If you feel as though you can’t trust yourself once the Quality Street come out, try chopping up little protein bars and having those as options instead. You can get ones that taste really good nowadays and the boost of protein means you will be less tempted by sugary snacks and maintain a steady energy. 


“Other options include having a handful of nuts that you can snack on throughout the day.  Using water and healthy high protein snacks means you won’t get that tiredness and headache we often get at the end of Christmas Day as a result of a sharp drop in sugar levels after eating too many sweet things. The water also offsets dehydration from alcohol.


The Great Escape


If you can, stepping outside for a walk in the fresh air for a while can beat Christmas fatigue and leave you feeling calmer and more energised. Even a short stroll alters your neurochemistry to help you feel happier and calmer, even better if you can escape with a companion who you feel relaxed with. Studies show that if you manage a brisk 20 minute walk, your mood will improve by the time the walk is over.


Be happy, not perfect


Of course Christmas is about spending time with family and loved ones but to corrupt the beautiful quote by Maya Angelou “People may forget how great your roast potatoes were, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” The best Christmas Days might mean that you cheat a little with the food, that the presents are not perfectly wrapped, but that you spent more time laughing and really talking and listening to each other. 


And don’t forget to take time out to take a little check on how you are feeling. Will your guests mind too much if you take time out at some point for a relaxing hot bath or even a nap if you’ve been up at 5am with small, excited children? If that’s just not possible, try to steal a few moments of peace throughout the day. Made for Life Organics Mindful Moments sets are perfect for this. If you’re feeling worn down or rushed off your feet, step aside and think. Do you need to clarify and focus, do you need to be revived and energised, or is it calm you most need, to feel nurtured. There are Mindful Moment oils for each case and you simply pour one or two drops on your fingertips, rub gently together and place your palms gently over your face, and just breathe.


If you feel guilty taking a little time out, just remember that the way you feel will radiate out to everyone around you. A healthier, calmer happier you, will make for a happier Christmas all round.