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  • Writer's picturematthewbramanlcsw

3 Self-Care Tips to Empower Your Holidays

Greet this Holiday Season as Your Authentic Self

The past two years have challenged many of us to our core. Now, the end of the year holidays are upon us and approaching. Even if 90% of the holiday bull$h*t is outside of your control, then I would like to join you as a partner to focus on the 10% that you can actually influence.

Here are some self-care tips to empower your holidays and help you cope this holiday season.

1.) Know Your Limits and Set Boundaries

Knowing your limits and setting boundaries are probably loaded topics for anyone, and they may need more of your time and attention to sort things out. Either way, check out this blog post "Tis the Season for Setting Boundaries" by Pamela Mendelsohn, LCSW of myTherapyNYC.

2.) Give the Gift of Your Presence
"Being present with others doesn’t just mean spending time with them. It means bringing your full self to the interaction. You’re not checking your phone or thinking about other stuff you should be doing. Instead, you’re giving your total focus to the people you are with."

I don't need to re-create the wheel here. Check out this blog post by Maura Nevel Thomas because I'm happy to share blog posts and resources from other folx because, like the name of this blog post suggests, it's all about self-care. I just want to give you the gift of my presence through this quick and easy to access list of resources, tips, and tools for your tool box.

3.) Access Your Authentic Self Using "The 8 Cs"
  1. Calm

  2. Connection

  3. Compassion

  4. Creativity

  5. Clarity

  6. Curiosity

  7. Confidence

  8. Courage

The 8 Cs of IFS - Internal Family Systems Therapy - are considered the qualities of self-energy.

Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapy uses "a plural model of mind" which suggests that we all have an internal system of countless "parts" who interact internally with each other and externally with other people. In addition, we all have a core resource that is not a part, which is characterized by balance, curiosity, and compassion. Richard C. Schwartz, Ph.D. (the founder of IFS) dubbed this non-resource part "the Self".

In general, there may be parts of us (i.e., sub-personalities) who have been hurt or emotionally injured. Sometimes these hurt or injured parts, and also other parts of us who try to protect us, can overwhelm, dominate, and take us over. Awareness of our "parts" and awareness of how these parts interact with each other internally and externally with other people, is essential in trying to communicate with them, understand them, and release their burdens.

Whenever you're operating from your authentic Self, then your experience will likely be characterized by The 8 Cs. Therefore, when you're not experiencing any of these qualities of self-energy (i.e., The 8 Cs), then you may be blended with a part or several parts.

IFS Therapy can help unblend and unburden the parts of you that add more stress to your life. Here and now - Slow down. Breathe. Maybe you can look for your Cs and see if you can make a conscious shift into being them just by being aware and applying your emotional self-energy.

If by chance you've found that you - your Self - are feeling more authentically you - calm, connected, compassionate, creative, clear, curious, confident, or courageous - then, great! However, if you're not there yet, then that's OK too. Let me know if you'd like some help with that.

Verve Psychotherapy offers modern & inclusive online therapy in New York & Georgia to empower men, new dads, and their partners with mindful masculinity.

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