The holiday season is officially here! Bells are jingling, parties are hopping, and we’re preparing to share our tidings of comfort and joy! With the pace of life picking up, the demand on our bodies picks up too, and with it the challenge of protecting our good health. Understanding how these challenges impact our patients (and many of the people they care about), here are 5 ways you can increase your holiday comfort (and joy!) with a little mobility self-care. #1: PACE YOURSELF: As much as we want to get everything done and checked-off of our holiday to-do list, there is great value in being patient with yourself and others. When you pace yourself, you reduce the possibility of physical strain and resulting pain. Whenever possible, take care of your holiday preparation activities a little bit each day instead of pushing yourself too hard. #2: FEET FIRST: The holidays almost always include standing longer and walking more than you may be accustomed to. Without a good pair of supportive shoes, you can experience back pain, muscle spasms and joint problems. Put your feet first and choose shoes that provide good support. #3: TAKE A DEEP BREATH: When the demand of the holidays gets too intense and the tension gets high, comfort can be replaced by anxiety and physical pain. Taking several deep breaths regularly will relax your body and help to release muscle tightness and tension, allowing comfort to return. This practice is good any time of the year, but is especially important during the holidays. #4 STAND UP STRAIGHT: Just like good shoes, standing up straight when you are on your feet for long periods of time can really help your comfort. Though many of us remember being told to do this by our parents, very few of us really understand the impact of posture on our mobility. #5 ASK FOR HELP: Most of us take pride in our independence and self-sufficiency and can sometimes find it difficult to ask for help. There are times, however, when asking for help really is a smart way to take care of yourself. If an item at the store is too high, don’t stretch so far it hurts, ask for help. If an item is too heavy, ask for help. If you can’t seem to finish everything that needs to be done, ask for help. It is okay to be kind to yourself and recognize what you can do healthfully and what you can’t. Besides, the good feelings that others experience when they know they helped another, brings comfort and joy to everyone involved! Increase your holiday comfort and enjoy this beautiful season!