The holidays are supposed to be a time of joy, not pressure and worry. Try a couple of these ways to reduce holiday stress this year!
The holidays are quickly approaching, and as it nears your blood pressure might be rising. This season, don’t let holiday stress get you down. Instead, beat holiday stress with these helpful tips. Below you will find easy to follow 7 ways to beat holiday stress that you can try to approach the seasons in a more positive manner. Don’t worry, it is easier than you might think!
7 Ways to Reduce Holiday Stress:
1. Surround yourself with positive people.
Do you have a real “Debbie Downer” in your family? If so, steer clear! The holidays are not the time to be around people who aren’t positive. Instead, choose to be around friends and family that have a positive outlook on life and can help keep you upbeat and stress-free. And communicate via text or email with the negative people in your life as much as possible.
If you have to be around someone who is negative, have a signal or word you use with your spouse or friend that will let them know you need help politely extricating yourself from a conversation.
2. Try natural remedies to keep calm during the holidays.
Familiarize yourself with natural stress busters such as tea, essential oils, and vitamin supplements. Such natural remedies can help you feel relaxed, nourished, and ready to tackle the season. A local health food store is a great place to start finding these items and more.
Choose caffeine-free herbal teas, as caffeine can increase anxiety which will not help with holiday stress!
Calming Essential Oils
You can use essential oils in a diffuser or in a carrier oil for a massage.
A 2008 study, found an aromatherapy hand massage using a blend of frankincense, lavender, and bergamot improved anxiety, depression, and pain in people with terminal cancer. They used a mixture of Bergamot, Lavender, and Frankincense in the ratio of 1:1:1, which was diluted by 1.5% with a sweet almond carrier oil.
3. Don’t forget to breathe.
When stuck in holiday traffic or a check out line, doing simple deep breathing exercises can be the difference between blowing your top and keeping your cool. When facing a stressful situation, just close your eyes and take 3-4 deep breaths. Relax your shoulders as you breathe and feel your body relax.
Box Breathing Technique
Box breathing, which is also sometimes called square breathing, is a breathing pattern that can be a stress reliever.
1: Slowly exhale to the count of four.
2: Hold your breath to the count of four.
3: Slowly inhale. Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose to the count of four.
4: Hold your breath to the count of four.
Repeat for 5 minutes to get the full calming effect.
4. Make daily agendas.
Now is not the time to try to store all of your tasks in your head. Avoid stress and get into the habit of making daily task lists to stay organized. A simple notebook or pocket calendar works great for this. You can prepare your daily plan each night before bed, and consult it in the morning when you wake up. Check off tasks as you go.
5. Set realistic goals.
If you have four children and an hour to shop, you are not going to be able to tackle your entire list. Instead, be realistic about the goals you have for yourself. Find multiple pockets of time and decide how you can divide your shopping list, tackling it little by little. Goals that you set for shopping, your budget, and even how you will handle family during the holidays needs to be done with realistic goals and time frame so you don’t get too hard on yourself.
6. Remember what matters.
The holidays are about faith, family, and having loads of fun. Don’t lose sight of what matters to you during the season. We can easily get overwhelmed and stressed, but when we keep our focus on what matters that stress seems to dissipate.
7. Use technology to help you lower your holiday stress.
A basic GPS app can keep you from getting lost in holiday traffic or on the way to Grandma’s house. Shop online at trusted retailers whenever possible to save time, gas, and stress. Don’t forget to follow your favorite deal bloggers so you can stay on top of deals and steals, helping you stay within your budget. Using technology to your advantage is a great way to be stress-free during the holidays.
More Holiday Stress Tips
Try to eat healthy meals, despite the busyness of the holidays and the surplus of sweets laying around.
Stay hydrated. Alcohol and lattes can actually dehydrate us, so drink plenty of water throughout the day.
Take a walk. Walking, even at a slow pace, is not only great exercise, but it reduces stress. If the weather is nice enough to walk outside, you will also get a dose of Vitamin D from the sun.
Take a long bath. A warm bath can relax tired muscles after a day of shopping or decorating. Add Epsom salts and essential oils if you wish.
Watch a funny movie. Laughter is the best medicine!
Read a book. An interesting book can provide an escape from stress.
Get some sleep. Instead of filling up all of your time off with holiday activities, schedule a few early nights, late mornings, and even sneak in a nap or two.
See how easy it can be to reduce holiday stress despite this busyness of the season? Give these simple tips a try and enjoy a season that is all about family instead.