We all have feelings of stress from time to time, but the holidays can kick that stress into high gear. Overloaded schedules, decorating, family get-togethers and expensive gift lists can cause holiday stress levels to escalate. Stress can be unhealthy. So, what can you do to minimize some of these holiday stress inducers?
- Make a budget: One of the leading causes of holiday stress is financial concerns. Make a reasonable budget for shopping and stick to it. No one wants you to go into debt just for the sake of the holidays. So, get that calculator out and set your budget early.
- Plan ahead: One of the best things about the holidays is that we know they are coming. Taking some time in advance to schedule activities, make shopping lists and create menus will help you ease into the holiday season with a detailed plan in mind.
- Keep your healthy habits: Don’t let all of your efforts this year go out the window just because it’s the holiday season. You will enjoy the holidays much more if you take care of yourself, get plenty of rest, and add some physical activity to each day. Also, try having a healthy snack before holiday parties so that you don’t go overboard on sweets and alcohol.
- Make time for yourself: Everyone’s busy this time of year, but there’s nothing wrong with taking a break. We all need time to be alone and unwind. Go get a massage or take a walk and listen to your favorite soundtrack. Sometimes we just need to unplug and take some deep breaths to get back on track.
- Be grateful: Most of us lead very busy lives, but don’t forget to soak up the time you can spend with others. Catch a movie with a friend, decorate cookies with the kids – just be sure to find extra time to spend with those you love.
Don’t let the holidays become something you dread. Instead, take steps to prevent the stress. With a little planning and some time for yourself, you can send Mr. Scrooge packing and find peace and joy this holiday season.