While the holidays are supposed to be a joyous time, they’re often filled with many stresses.

As you purchase gifts for others, think about a gift to yourself.

I’m not referring to something you buy.

Instead, think about taking a day (or at least a few hours) to do whatever you want—time for yourself.

Go ahead and block off this time in your January calendar.

It’ll give you something to look forward to after meeting all the holiday obligations.

It’s your gift to yourself.

Start planning how you’ll spend that time.

Consider turning off your phone, including social media, during that time so you won’t be interrupted.  

Here are some ideas to explore:

Take a long walk

Binge-watch a program on your streaming list

Go to the movies

Eat at your favorite restaurant

Treat yourself to a spa service

Listen to your favorite music

Read a book

Plan a weekend getaway

Donate items to charity

Take an extra-long nap

Buy an adult coloring book and color

Bike your favorite trail

Catch-up on your favorite podcast

Learn to meditate

Create a photo collage of your favorite photos from 2023

Experiment with a new recipe

No matter what you decide to do, relish your time by yourself.

If you’re uncomfortable eating at a restaurant by yourself, then order takeout.

If you don’t like going to the movies alone, stay home and watch movies.

Stop finding excuses and accept the challenge to spend time by yourself.

It may be uncomfortable at first, but you’ll eventually enjoy it.

And why wouldn’t you enjoy your own company?

Spending time by yourself allows you to learn more about yourself.

You’ll learn what you like and what you don’t like without anyone’s influence.

You’ll be more reflective about life and form your own opinions.

End this holiday season by giving yourself a gift – your time.

Spend a day by yourself doing what you want. Be indulgent and turn off your phone.

Cherish the time you have by yourself just to be you.

(Update to original post from December 29, 2016)


Niv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA®, RICP®, is a Managing Director at Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life, and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter, and financial advisor. Her services include developing  comprehensive financial plans, divorce financial reviews, and retirement plans. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me.’”