Get rid of the stress and start enjoying holidays again.
For many people, holidays aren't relaxing at all and mean ~ lots of extra things to do which creates lots of extra S-T-R-E-S-S! Here are some suggestions to help you manage stress around the holidays and relax so that you, and those around you, can enjoy the holidays more:
1. Set realistic expectations: Don’t expect that this will be the year that everyone comes together and gets along if it hasn’t happened in the past 10 years! We tend to fantasize about the holiday we long for, and forget that’s all it is, a fantasy.
2. Accept your limitations: You cannot be all things to all people so stop trying. Know when to say “no.”
3. Take extra special care of yourself: Maintain balance in your eating, sleeping, drinking, and exercise habits. Do something you like, just for you!
4. Find some time to help others: Volunteer in a nursing home, food pantry or hospital and bring some holiday cheer to someone less fortunate. Brighten someone’s day when they least expect it with a “random act of kindness.”
5. Create healthy traditions for your family: Read a new book, go caroling, see a new holiday movie, anything that involves spending quality time with your loved ones.
6. Focus on the spiritual, rather than material: Remember the reason why we celebrate the holidays in the first place and focus less on all the glitz and the trappings.
7. Stay out of family arguments: Or better yet, try to be the peacemaker and listen without being judgmental. Practice effective communication—listening.
8. Watch frivolous spending: Don’t try to outdo other family members with expensive gifts that you will have to pay for later. Better yet – make a gift that comes from your heart!
9. Remember you cannot change other people: You are the only person you can change. If you don’t like what someone is doing, create space between you and that person.
10. Have fun: It can be affirming to be surrounded by family. Enjoy it.
Dr. Joseph Gitto
331 Tilton Road Suite #12