Stress and the Holidays
For some of us the holidays are extremely stressful and little joy is had during a magical time of year. Between all of the to do lists, to buy lists and all of the extra goodies and sweets we are eating, planning for the holidays can leave us feeling irritable, cranky and even depressed. Many factors are at play when it comes to the “Holiday Blues”. Being away from family and friends, a recent split in a relationship, celebrating a first holiday without a dear loved one, reflecting on things we wish we did in the past year.
If you are experiencing any overwhelming feelings this time of year there are some things you can do to help lift your spirits and mood.
Spend time with people who care about you. It is ok to say no to the party or get together, you don’t need to explain or give an excuse.
Volunteer, being of service to others is truly giving from the heart. It will help you feel less isolated and lift your spirits.
Stay active, get out in nature if possible. A walk around your neighborhood, window shop, a leisurely bike ride. Mother Nature’s effects are magical.
Try something new, maybe a vacation with family or friends. It doesn’t have to be so grand even trying something small can have positive benefits.
Breathe deeply often.
Watch funny shows. Laughter is contagious and releases the good chemicals our bodies love.
Get help if you need it. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help at ANY time of the year.
Prevent holiday stress by making your expectations realistic.
Don’t hold onto unrealistic goals, such as creating the most enchanting holiday atmosphere.
Cooking the perfect meal from scratch.
Over the top gifts you can’t afford or stretch your budget to thin.
Simplify commitments, avoid time crunches by planning and not over scheduling yourself.
Allow time for yourself, remember to do things YOU enjoy as well.
Avoid over eating and drinking, especially alcohol. Alcohol can increase depression and sadness.
Avoid starving yourself either as this can lead to the over eating.
Managing your time can help decrease the stress and lead to a less stressful holiday season.
Ask others, including the kids, to help with chores.
Set priorities and let go of the impossible.
Don’t try to complete or do everything at once.
Take the time to stop and look around you to enjoy what is right in front of you.
Listen to your body… Rest when it tells you to.
Most of all, know that you matter and love is all around us.
I truly wish you all a magical, merry, holiday season.
References: The Cleveland Clinic
This information provided is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider for advice about a specific medical condition.