The holiday season is a magical time of year! Unfortunately, many people find themselves stressed out and feeling overwhelmed. Here are 5 tips to reduce stress and stay sane over the holidays:
- Adjust your expectations of yourself: Oftentimes people feel more pressure during the holidays with school bake sales, gift shopping, entertaining, family visits and more. These activities, which are typically enjoyable, can seem more like a burden as they pile up. Instead of saying yes to everything, prioritize each activity and decide if it a) brings you joy or b) will it be significant to someone you care about. Being selective and taking pressure off yourself can allow you to set limits and take a few shortcuts instead of focusing on making everything perfect for everyone.
- Sing along to Christmas carols: Music is proven to reduce stress and when singing out loud to your fave holiday songs, you focus on something other than the endless to-dos that consume your thoughts. This mental break and the boost of endorphins from the upbeat music will leave you feeling happy and less stressed.
- Get physical: Getting a workout in during the holidays might seem impossible which can leave you feeling drained, uninspired and bad about yourself compounding feelings of stress. Bundle your workouts into family time or visits with friends. Grab your skates, skis, snowshoes or hiking boots and get outside! There are many winter activities that get your heart pumping, but a simple walk catching up with a friend will reduce stress and lower cortisol in the body.
- Set a Budget: Holiday stress can stem from financial strain and pressure to buy gifts. It can get pricey when you’re buying gifts for an endless list of friends (and their kids!), office exchanges, extended family, your child’s teacher, your hairstylist, etc. Set a budget, set a limit on who you plan to buy for and get creative with gift ideas to save money and alleviate financial stress.
- Maintain a healthy, nutritious diet: When you’re busy and surrounded by tempting treats, you may tend to make unhealthy food choices. A lack of nutrients and feeling run down over the holidays leaves you vulnerable to colds and flus which is often the unexpected thing people give to each other at holiday gatherings. Buy a box of mandarins and a veggie tray to keep handy for healthy snacks, wash a bunch of spinach to toss into pasta, omelets, etc. and make veggies a priority at mealtime.
Armed with these tips, you can enjoy this special time of year. Happy holidays from Jassal Chiropractic! We hope to see you in the new year!