While the holiday season is enjoyable for many people, it can also be a time of great stress. Whether spending time with friends and family or experiencing pangs of loneliness, we all need to find ways to minimize our holiday-induced stress. The good news is that there are several things which you can do that will help.
How to Minimize Holiday Stress
- Prioritize. Before you become overwhelmed by all of the holiday activities, create a prioritization list. Use this list to determine which activities are the most important for you to participate in. By planning this ahead, you can reduce stress related declining events at the last minute or attending ones you did not want to.
- Find shortcuts. There are only a certain number of hours in a day in which we can get everything done. Find those tasks that you can; get away with not doing at all, do in less time, or outsource to someone else.
- Plan ahead to avoid excessive eating. Most of our health plans go out the window around the holidays. This can be perfectly fine if done in moderation. By planning ahead, you can find ways to minimize temptation, and be more successful at maintaining your health goals.
- Set limits around time together. Family and togetherness time is a big part of the holiday season. However, too much togetherness along with time around negative or draining family members can become stressful. To minimize this stress learn how to create healthy limits around family time.
- Connect with others. The stress could also come from spending too much time alone. Even if you don’t have close family it is important to be purposeful about connecting with others. Doing something to help others can help shift your focus away from what you lack towards recognizing what you have.
- Put it on paper. Writing down and scheduling in your plans is a great way to help determine if they are realistic or not. This lets you see if you are overbooking yourself and gives you the opportunity to make adjustments as needed. Remember to schedule in time for relaxation and exercise, which are both wonderful ways to help reduce your stress.
- Remember to breathe. Slow down and remember to breathe! When we have an abundance of things to do, it is easy to become overwhelmed. Slowing down and taking a couple of deep breaths before getting into your activities, can help set the tone for a more relaxed and enjoyable experience.
Here’s wishing you a stress-free holiday season!