Tips for Holiday StressHoliday season is in full swing and as beautiful and magical as the holiday season should be, it can also be very stressful. The constant activity and commitments, not to mention shopping, entertaining, and celebrating, causes us to need a vacation by the time January 2nd rolls around.
To minimize the impact holiday stress can have, consider some of the following tips:
- Prioritize Appropriately: We are more likely to say "yes" now as compared to the rest of the year. Before you raise your hand for the next volunteer opportunity, evaluate if it is something you really can afford to do. Does your schedule allow for the time commitment? Will the activity cause you more stress? Is it something you really enjoy or are you doing it out of guilt or other negative reasons? Say "no" when you need to, and don't beat up on yourself for doing so. Prioritizing your choices around your own needs will allow you to get done what you need to and allow you to take care of others when it is really necessary.
- Avoid the Crowds: There are so many reasons to shop online during the holiday season, but one of the best reasons is that it will keep stress away. You'll avoid the crowds, the traffic, and the running from store to store when you can't find what you're looking for. If you need to go to the stores, go during off-peak hours, such as work-time hours during the work-week or early in the morning on weekends.
- Have a Relaxation Ritual: Build in time away from the craziness is a huge stress-reliever. At least once a week, do something you love that qualifies as relaxation, such as getting a massage, taking a yoga class, meditating or enjoying a bath. Most of all, it is important to get into a peaceful, quiet place that allows you to unwind.
Have Some Fun: There are a lot of fun activities that can get you out of the craziness and into a more relaxed mode. For instance, take some time and go ice skating at the park, or skiing at a local mountain. If the outdoors doesn't appeal, go watch a funny, uplifting movie to get you laughing and smiling.
Keep Up with a Healthy Regimen: Eating right, exercising and getting enough sleep are all vitally important to keeping you stress-free and healthy. Although you may feel like time is crunched, make sure to stay active, even if it means doing a few extra laps at the mall. When you aren't indulging at holiday parties, eat lots of vegetables and fruit to get your needed vitamins and minerals and to keep your digestive tract regular. And finally, aim for a solid 7 or 8 hours of sleep a night. If you need to sleep in on the weekends, do so.