Mind & Body
10 Tips to Avoid Holiday Stress
11/30/2018 12:41:10 PM
Holiday Stress

Most people look forward to the holidays each year because the season promises excitement, joy, and general merriment; but with all the inherent busyness, the holidays can also be quite stressful. Consider the following suggestions to help you relax and fully enjoy the holiday season.

Learn to say no, when appropriate. 
Saying yes to every single invitation may make the holiday season a stressful time for you. Your family may ask you to do many things over the holidays. Although quality time is nice, allocate your time accordingly. If you don’t schedule your time wisely you’ll become overcommitted and stressed-out.
Forget the holiday fantasy. 
We can dream of the perfect family in matching sweaters sipping cider by the fire, but this stereotypical holiday fantasy is just that – make believe. If you set unrealistic expectations, you will be disappointed. Appreciate your actual family, no matter how crazy. Let the reality of your holidays unfold. It may not be your ideal, but life is not a television sitcom.
Scratch perfectionism off your to-do list.
 Now is the season to bond and spend time together, but it tends to be a time of chaos for some as well. Don’t try to control situations. Things can sometimes go wrong, and that is just life. Go with the flow to best enjoy every moment.
Control the urge to overeat. 
Indulging is expected during the holidays, but set a limit. Your health is top priority. When you eat junk and desserts to excess, your body becomes out of balance. Save yourself the New Year’s resolution, and eat in moderation now.
Know that you can’t make everyone happy.
It is impossible to please everyone, and this is particularly true during the holiday season. You won’t make every dinner party, and that is okay. People may initially seem disappointed, but when you set your boundaries, people respect you for it.

Think like a minimalist. 
The holidays are often categorized as a gift-giving season, thanks to the excessive commercialization of the season. There’s no need to expect or buy dazzling expensive presents from and for family, friends, and coworkers. Big expectations lead to big disappointments if not fulfilled. 
Avoid buying on credit. 
The season’s gift-giving reputation encourages overspending. Purchase gifts within your budget. Be personal and genuine rather than showy. These gifts are more heartfelt than the big-ticket item on everyone’s wish list this season. Spending on credit will skyrocket your stress levels when the January bills arrive.
Focus on experiences and relationships, rather than things. 
The pressure to buy during this time of year can shift your perspective onto things rather than experiences. Happiness is not dictated by what you own, but rather what you do and who you are as a person. Consider gifting an experience like a trip or a concert to make a memorable adventure.

Take time for yourself. 
The holidays are known for spending time together with loved ones, but don’t forget about yourself. It can be a great stress reliever to relax and enjoy alone time.

Avoid the need to plan everything. 
Planning can relieve a lot of stress when you carefully articulate your daily schedule, but not always. Trying to control every minute leads to underlying stress you might not even realize. Don’t live for your to-do list, but rather bask in the moment. Being present during the holidays is the most enjoyable thing you can do. You never know what unexpected excitement could be right around the corner.

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Categories: Health  |  Stress

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