What to do when you wake up feeling sick over the holidays

I’m teaming up with Ricolaยฎ Herb & Throat drops, as part of a campaign with Socialstars, to bring you this sponsored post. 

Sadly enough, one morning during my two-week trip to Florida for Thanksgiving, I woke up with a tickle in my throat and knew what was to come. Although I got my annual flu shot and was adamant about washing my hands and staying hydrated during my cross-country trip, somehow a little bug got to me. 

That morning, I made the decision to scrap my plans and instead indulge in a “get well” day if you will. Even though I am not a doctor, I feel like my plan worked for me, because I woke up the next day feeling a little bit stronger. It got me thinking that we often push through illness when we’re busy, especially during the holidays. But perhaps that’s not doing us any favors. That’s why, today, I’m sharing the perfect plan, in case you find yourself feeling under the weather.

What to do when you wake up feeling sick over the holidays via A Lady Goes West blog

What to do when you wake up feeling sick over the holidays

  • Stay in bed. Don’t bother trying to get up early with your alarm to tackle the day, if you’re able to call in sick from work. Send an email to your team from your phone upon rising, let them know you’re down for the count and stay in the comfort of your bed for at least 30 minutes extra, laying there with no distractions. Your work will be there the next day, and we all are supposed to have sick days for a reason. If you’ve got kids to take care of, hopefully you can get some help from your spouse or a babysitter. Those few extra moments in bed in the morning will do you a world of good. And quite frankly, showing up somewhere when you’re clearly not well is not the smartest plan anyhow.
  • Drink up. Chug as much water as you can. Infuse that water with cucumber or lemons if you need a little flavoring to make it more enticing. You can also grab some fruit juice. Even classic orange juice can help with all that vitamin C it contains. I happen to love plain coconut water as well. Your body wants liquids, and a little bit of sugar can give you some energy. 
  • Heat up with tea. Tea is our friend, my friends. I drank a number of mugs of hot tea when I wasn’t feeling well (who am I kidding, I drink a couple of mugs of hot green tea every day anyways), and the warm liquid soothed my throat. Bonus points for putting honey in your tea.
  • Cozy up and watch holiday movies. My favorite holidays movies are “White Christmas” and “Miracle on 34th Street.” I swear, even if you’re sick, when you cozy up on the couch with a blanket and a mug of tea and take in the music and dancing of something as wonderful as “White Christmas,” you’ll forget your symptoms in no time. It’s science.

Ricola drops via A Lady Goes West

  • Down the drops. You know when you get a sore throat and you just keep swallowing over and over again to see if it still hurts? That process is a whole lot more palatable when you’re swallowing a Ricola Dual Action Honey Lemon drop, because they provide sore throat and cough relief with natural herb ingredients.
  • Forget your workout. Yes, here I am, a personal trainer and healthy-living blogger telling you to forget your workout. But I think it’s important to let your body heal. I do however, think that taking a nice long walk is totally okay. Just don’t push it. When I wasn’t feeling well, I took a very slow 30-minute stroll outside listening to a podcast, and it was just the right amount of movement giving me some fresh air.
  • Say “no” to invitations. Your inbox may be filling up with holiday party invites around this time of year, but it’s just not a good idea to head out celebrating when you’re not well. Give yourself the gift of saying “no” to things that you aren’t excited about it. It’s totally fine to do.
  • Slurp down the soup. The only time I ever eat soup is when I’m sick. I’m not sure why, but so true. I had a delicious broth bowl on the day I wasn’t feeling well, and I swear it nourished my body so much, I instantly felt more energized. Even if you aren’t feeling too hungry while lying in bed all day, don’t forget to feed yourself properly. Soup is an easy and hearty choice. 
  • Bundle up. Scarves, slippers, wool hats, socks and sweatpants are made for sick days. Put on all your comfortables and don’t think twice about having to look presentable. If you’re lucky enough to have a fireplace, plant yourself in front of it for a little while.
  • Stay positive. Tomorrow is a new day. A lot of times a positive mentality can work wonders when we’re ill. (See the one above about watching holiday movies!) Don’t feel blue because you may miss a few activities or not get anything on your to-do list accomplished, because you’ll be stronger very soon. Keep up your spirits.

I’m wishing you nothing but health and wellness over this holiday season, but if you do find yourself on the sick list, take it easy and follow some of these tips to be on the road to recovery sooner. 

Dual Action Honey drops by Ricola via A Lady Goes West blog

And while you’re at it, saying “happy anniversary” to Ricola! Would you believe it’s the 75th anniversary of Ricola’s Original Herb Drop? By the way, if you visit this site today and read about Ricola’s history, you can take a quiz on the company for a chance to win a real gold drop. Totally cool. Check it out here. Take care my friends!

A to-do list for when you're sick during the holidays ... @RicolaUSA Share on X

*Disclaimer: As part of a Socialstars campaign, this post in sponsored by Ricola. I’ve really enjoyed learning about this family-owned Swiss company as a year-long ambassador. However, please know that all the thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own. For more information on Ricola, you can visit Ricola on Facebook or on Twitter.

Questions of the day

What’s your must-do when you’re not feeling well?

What’s your favorite Christmas movie?


  1. I had a cold last week and have to agree with all your points … I really think they helped me beat the bug a lot sooner than if I had just suffered through it. I’m lucky that I’m able to work from home when I’m feeling under the weather and I think that helped immensely because I was able to sleep in a bit and work from home in the comfort of my pjs. I also drank lots of tea, relied on Ricola drops (the best!) and watched many cheesy Christmas movies in the evening while bundled up on the couch!!

    1. Well, great minds think alike, Catherine! I’m sure all of that rest at home helped you to get stronger and be better sooner. ๐Ÿ™‚ But you didn’t say … what’s YOUR favorite Christmas movie??

      1. So hard to pick a fave … I’d narrow it down to Griswold’s Family Vacation, Elf and Love Actually. But I also really like all the cheesy, predictable Hallmark movies that play during the Christmas season.

    1. Hi Liz! I hope he doesn’t get sick this year, but if he does, you should totally curl up and watch Christmas movies with him instead of going to work. heheh! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I think that sometimes people think IT’S THE HOLIDAYS I MUST DO EVERYTHING. But being miserable while hanging with everyone isn’t doing them any favors either! It is best to take care of yourself so that you actually can be in the holiday spirit.

  3. We all came down with The Crud over Thanksgiving. My favorite remedy is like you said staying in bed and drinking lots of liquids, but it is approximately 1,047x harder to get a busy three year old to do the same!

    My favorite holiday movies are a toss-up between Elf and Bad Santa. They both make me pee-in-pants laugh!

    1. Ahhh yes, Emily, those are hilarious Christmas movies for sure. ๐Ÿ™‚ And I bet it’s tough to get your little one to relax. Hope you’re feeling all the way better!

  4. I agree rest is essential. I use their sugar free drops. They are great to and no sugar. My favorite holiday movie is. “The Holiday”

  5. Great tips! It’s amazing how lack of sleep can just punch me in the gut and knock me over for a couple of days – a real problem when I’m traveling!

    My main tricks are to stay hydrated (as you mentioned), wash my sheets, and I’ve strangely noticed that throwing out my old toothbrush for a new one helps out a lot. Kind of random, but it does make sense when you think about it. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for the tips!

    1. Funny you mention the sheets, Jessica, because I just read an article how it’s imperative to clean your sheets weekly for just this reason. I’ve always done it, but wondered if I could wash less.

  6. I’m feeling a little under the weather and boy did I need this post! I am trying to make myself get school work done, when I know I need a day off. Thanks for the great advice!

  7. Such great tips! Hydration is extra important when you are not feeling well. When I feel the start of something in my throat/nose I take it easy in the evenings, drink tea, watch a cheesy Netflix movie and cuddle with the pup. Sometimes you just have to relax and rest. ๐Ÿ™‚ Hoping everyone stays healthy and well this busy season !

  8. Ashley, this is such a great post – and perfect timing! There is def something in the air here. I think you TOTALLY nailed it about not going to work & not working out. It’s so easy to get stressed about work but you are so right – work will ALWAYS be here, no matter what! Rest is seriously the best thing you can do for your body – and I love ricola! I find those dual actions you posted work the best! Isn’t it also amazing how healing tea is? Every day, I am more & more convinced that it is just the secret to life! xx SS

  9. All great tips Ashley! Getting sick is the worst, especially around the holidays! But taking a day to snuggle up with tea and Christmas movies is always nice. I watch a Christmas Vacation every year ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Perfect tips! It’s funny though but even if I am super sick I still prefer to get up, shower and pop on a little makeup. I find it makes me feel more ‘human’ and a little less sick. Maybe I am just an odd cookie ๐Ÿ˜‰

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