7 Tips for Coping with Holiday Stress

Family sitting at table for holiday mealThe holiday season can be a most wonderful time of the year, but it also can be a time of stress-induced, anxiety-filled moments. If you experience stress, you know how important it is to take a moment to breathe and enjoy the time spent with loved ones. Sometimes this is easier said than done.

We’ve rounded up seven tips for coping with holiday stress, to help you stay happy, healthy and energized:

  • Soak up some sunshine – Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a very real condition that affects millions of Americans every year, according to the Mayo Clinic. To counteract feelings of sadness, something as simple as spending time near a window on a sunny day can help to stimulate the production of feel-good serotonin that can boost your mood.
  • Go for a walk – A brisk, daily, half-hour walk can do wonders to clear the mind and help decrease anxiety.
  • Learn to say “no” – Instead of saying “yes” to every invitation and activity, take time to check in with yourself, to make sure that you aren’t going overboard. It’s OK to say “no.”
  • Maintain your daily routine – Don’t let the holidays trump it. Trying to squeeze in more “holiday” than you can realistically handle can quickly bring down your holiday cheer. Don’t let your regular activities, such as going to the gym, fall by the wayside.
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff – Unless you’re a “Martha Stewart,” what’s the likelihood that everything about your holiday celebration will be perfect? Could dinner be a little late? Did an unexpected guest show up? Stop worrying. Focus on what matters most – enjoying time spent with your loved ones.
  • Remember to delegate – If you’re hosting the family celebration, remember that you don’t have to do everything yourself. Do the tasks that you truly enjoy doing, and ask friends and family to pitch in and help with the other tasks.
  • Make your holiday a tech-free holiday – Consider turning off all cell phones and other devices, and focus on being in the moment.
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