November 20, 2014
The holiday season is a time filled with fun and excitement, but the joy can sometimes be trumped by feelings of anxiety and stress as our schedules fill up, our bank accounts become strained and our to-do lists grow long. The added pressure of the holidays can take a toll on our health and well-being by lowering immunity, disrupting digestive systems, affecting mental health and more.
When we’re exhausted or don’t feel well, we can’t fully enjoy the festivities of the season and the time we spend with family and friends. This year, be proactive about lessening your holiday stress by considering these tips from Humana, a national Y partner for promoting healthy living:
Avoid Triggers: Get creative about avoiding situations that cause you stress. If you really dislike long lines, shop early in the season. If you get frustrated while searching for a parking space, have a friend drop you at the door. Small changes can go a long way toward preserving your holiday spirit.
Share Your Feelings: Feelings of frustration, disappointment and loneliness can be difficult to share, but talking about them with close friends or family members can alleviate built-up stress and bring a great sense of relief.
Stick to a Budget: Lessen the stress of holiday spending by deciding early on how much you can afford to spend on gifts, travel and other expenses. Creating a budget and sticking to it can help relieve financial anxiety during and after the holidays.
Practice Self-Control: Delicious sweet treats and rich holiday meals are part of the season’s fun, but overindulgence can cause guilt and stress. Find a balance by watching portion sizes or having a healthy snack before attending holiday parties.
Seek Support: When you feel overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to seek the support of a counselor or therapist who can help you manage stress and focus your energy on enjoying the holidays.