Imagine for a moment that your “To Do” list has an important person at the top; someone who embodies all the aspects of daily life—a boss, a doctor, a therapist, an accountant, a nurse, a housekeeper, a cook, a chauffeur—someone like you.

We often find ourselves, especially at this time of year, moving to the bottom of the list only having to make up for the shortfall later. This holiday season, take the time to think about the one person in your life who truly does it all and give her the permission—okay, let’s call it a gift—to add her needs to the ever mounting list of errands, jobs, tasks and traditions that we face every day and, in particular, each holiday season.

An old friend of mine once pointed out the best piece of advice that she has gotten was, oddly enough, given to her by of all people —flight attendants. I’m sure you’ve all heard this one before: “In case of emergency, place the oxygen mask over your nose and mouth before placing the mask on the mouth of your child.”

How simple, and how true?

As women we are the natural caregivers of the family—whether through genetic code or sociological standing—but who will take care of our loved ones if we don’t take care of ourselves first?

To others, we are daughters, sisters, wives, aunts, mothers and friends. But who are we to ourselves?

Think carefully about your current “To Do” list.  Whether it’s sitting next to your computer or still stuck in your head, consider the following: Though the Christmas cards may need to be addressed, some gifts still purchased and wrapped and grandma’s latke recipe has yet to be found…the holidays are happening with or without us overworking and over-stressing.

It’s okay to stop by your favorite coffee house for a soothing cup of cocoa while shopping or to stuff envelopes by the fireplace, and only after a cleansing facial mask or hot bath; or to call the local gourmet food store to order your family’s traditional dish or platter of cookies, using that extra time to take a quick yoga class, jog or just to catch up on some sleep.  

Because if you’re not in your best possible health at the start of the New Year, who will be there for your family when they’re flying through 2010?

My holiday wish is for you to take better care of YOU!
So if you have a minute or two, email and let me know what you have done for You this holiday season. Need ideas? Click here for five ways to reward yourself, for free! 

Warm and healthy wishes always,

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