With the shortened holiday season this year, and the Christmas Creep, I’m sure you lovely readers are already stressed over Christmas! All the gift buying, decorating, baking, and holiday party planning can be overwhelming. If that’s not enough, add in the delicate balance of family/friend vs. personal time, tasks of daily living, and the flashy lights of consumerism. It’s barely a week into the Christmas season, and I’m shutting down.
Christmas is a lot for me to take in. As a kid, I used to be comforted that I saw Christmas everywhere. Now all I see are sidewalks that need to be shoveled, a booked calendar, and materialism. However, I relish in the smell of peppermint. (So good!!) I love looking at Christmas lights! I adore snuggling on the couch watching a favorite holiday movie! (Add a cup of cocoa, and that’s all I need in life!)
Finding that balance between an overwhelming holiday season and the much-needed “me time” is a delicate balance. Here are a few of my tips for dealing with all the holiday stress…
4 ways to manage holiday stress:
- Count your blessings. Thank goodness you have the money to spend, whatever amount that may be. Be thankful for the great family friends you get to spend time with- others aren’t always so lucky.
- Look at the joy in other’s faces. I don’t particularly like “materialism” but I love gifts. (It’s my love language!) I love picking out the exact gift a person would like, and I adore receiving them. Gifts don’t have to be a $500 TV or a $200 watch. An eloquent poem, a handmade item, or a bouquet of flowers for the host always make wonderful gifts.
- Breathe. I’ve done a couple yoga classes in my day, and almost all beginner level. The first 5 minutes of class (in almost any practice) are all about breathing. Proper breathing is very important, in yoga, and life. When I feel that tidal wave of stress coming on, I stop everything and take a deep breath in through the nose, and forcefully, push it out through the mouth. A few of these always do the trick to calm me down.
- Recharge your own batteries. Make time to do the important things for yourself so that you can give more fully to the other (less important) aspects of this season. Your time is going to be stretched to the brink this season. Take a moment to inventory what is important to you (volunteering, spirituality, a friend, your spouse, your kids, etc.) and be sure to give them (and yourself) a little of your energy.
For more tips, see this article about stress during the holidays from the Mayo Clinic, or read last year’s article.
This article brought to you by Nicole Brennan, contributing writer from Mod City Mag.
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