10 Ways To Minimize Stress During The Holiday Season
10 Ways To Minimize Stress During The Holiday Season
Just the thought of the holiday season can create a sense of panic and stress for many people.The added financial expenses, the loss of a loved one or a job, being alone, or not well, can leave one feeling depressed and or stressed. Then there can be luncheons, dinner engagements, parties, gift purchasing, wrapping, decorating, baking, dinners to prepare and/or attend, etc., and can be extremely overwhelming and exhausting. It doesn't have to be that way. In fact, the holidays can be a very beautiful and peaceful time. We have to remember the pressures, worries, tensions and the loneliness we might feel can be lifted, and a sense of peace and joy can fill our hearts and souls, and comfort and renew our wounded spirits.Reach out. If you are alone over the holidays, or they are an emotional time for you, call a friend and see if you can get together. Friends are there through joys and sorrows, and no, you won't be imposing and if you are, you might want to take a closer look at your friendship.Volunteer some time at a food bank, or shelter, or attend a church dinner or service, or offer your help to others. When you reach out you are inviting in togetherness and you never know what can happen when you open your heart to others, perhaps yours opens a little more as well.Minimize spending. Spend less and give more. There are so many ways to bestow onto others without breaking your budget, or overspending. You can bake cookies, or write a poem or letter of appreciation, or make a craft, or put a big red bow on yourself and offer to help out. Giving is so much more than what you spend, it's what comes from your heart, not your wallet. Prioritize. Ask yourself what's really important for you during the holidays, then organize your month so that you are doing what brings you peace and joy, not stress and frustration.Make sure there are some empty spaces to reschedule things as life is filled with wonderful unexpected happenings. We have to love these as they really put into perspective what's truly important at the end of the day so if you didn't know before, you will now. When your priority is you, then you are less frazzled and more dazzled. Say no. If you are the type of person who gets invited to everything, or everywhere, know when to draw the line. Saying no isn't the hard part. What can be difficult is the way you might feel when you do. Often people feel obligated to go places and are afraid if they don't others won't understand or will be upset and, they very well might be. Trying to please everyone leaves one feeling stressed, so choose events that mean the most to you and let the others go.
When you say no, you are really saying yes to you! Ask for help. This isn't always easy for some people because they feel they "should" be able to handle everything, or that they don't want to bother other people.When you take on too much it can leave you feeling tired, worn out and overwhelmed, but when someone helps, it allows more time for you to relax and enjoy the things you value most.Asking for help isn't a sign of weakness as you might think, it is one of strength, because you are recognizing the importance of taking care of you and that time can be better spent doing more of what you love. Relaxation. The problem a lot of people face during their busy weeks, and especially during the holidays, is there isn't enough time to relax. You have to make the time for you to be calm. You might even have to schedule the time by putting it on your calendar, or making sure each week there is some down time just for you. If you can't commit to specific times or days, then at least take some time to sit quietly even if it's only for a few minutes. When you are relaxed you will be much more productive and happy than if you are stressed and miserable. How is this helping you?Comfort and joy. How much comfort and joy can you feel if you are stressed out and panicking about things? Take a bath, curl up and watch your favourite movie, play a board or card game, listen to music, meditate, light some candles, cook a comfort meal, have a cup of tea, etc. When you are doing things that promote comfort and joy, the stress just seems to melt away like an icicle on a warm winter's day. Go for a walk or exercise. Believe it or not, if you go for a walk or exercise when you are tired you actually feel less tired. Whether you take the dog, the kids, your partner, or go by yourself, taking a stroll is good for the heart and soul. Being in the fresh air, seeing the stars twinkle, or the sun shining, listening to the birds singing or feeling the breeze blowing, awakens your senses to the glorious wonders in and around you. Breathe. Remember to pay attention to your breathing. Take a few deep breaths as often as possible; this relaxes the body and mind. When we are stressed our breathing becomes very shallow and comes from our chests rather than our stomachs. It's amazing what a few deep breaths can do for you. Journal. Journaling doesn't have to take a long time and is a wonderful way to end a busy or emotional day.You can jot down the things and people you are grateful for.You can write about what you accomplished for the day, as well whether you helped someone else.You can write down the compliments you received and the ones you gave.Most importantly, make a note of how you took care of you today and why it's great to be alive.Don't forget to make YOU a priority this season; it's up to you how stressful or enjoyable the holidays will be. Which will you choose?Take time to enjoy as many wonderful moments as you can because you never know how many you will be blessed with. Using the insight technique can assist you in transforming stress into joy and peace.
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