Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday
If you are like me then you probably love this time of year. For me it starts around Thanksgiving and goes through Kwanzaa. I love the lights, decorations, seeing family and friends that I usually don’t see most of the year and let’s not forget the food! However, with all of that comes the stress of preparation and traveling…even if it’s local travel.
You may already be feeling the anxiety of the holiday season. It could be financial stress, food anxiety or even depression. Today I would like to offer some tips for a stress-free holiday this year and beyond.
K.I.S.S.- Remember the reason for the season! This may sound corny but it is so true. The holidays are about relationships and spending time with the people we love so keep it simple sister.
Plan ahead- Failure to plan is planning to fail and this could extend to every area of life from finances, to nutrition to fitness. Predetermine your budget for presents. This is huge! Do not go into debt buying presents for anyone, even your children. Financial responsibility is the gift you choose to give yourself daily. Plan your meals and workouts, YES even during the holidays. You can indulge just remember you don’t have to nose dive into destructive food choices.
Get moving- Plan your workouts ahead of time. Perhaps you can take a family walk before dinner to build up that appetite. Or take a walk after dinner and before desert…you know, before everyone gets the “itis” and needs to nap. Staying active during the holiday is a great way to manage stress and can help alleviate depression.
Ask for help- If you are the host this year, it is perfectly fine to make the main dish and ask people to bring a side dish to share. You can also prepare some foods in advance and freeze them. Who says you must do it all?
Create Healthy Boundaries- While family get togethers are a lovely idea, the truth is they can be a source of great pain for some people. Set realistic expectations with family and friends. If you have a tense relationship with a family member, then you may need to limit your time with them. If that’s the case, prepare yourself beforehand.
Make time for Self-Care- In the effort to take care of everyone else, it’s easy for us women to give, give and then give some more. However, you have to remember that you must take care of yourself too. Do the tasks that are important to you and allow others to pick up the slack. Don’t work so hard getting things done that you forget to stop and enjoy the present moment. Take time to stop, breath and listen to your body. It’s tempting to keep going but you must rest when it is time to rest.
Life can be stressful enough so we don’t need to let that be compounded during this time of year. I pray these tips encourage you to have a stress-free holiday. You can do this and do it well and trust me, it’s much easier than the alternative which is fatigue, resentment, anxiety and missed opportunities for authentic connections.
Now it’s your turn, do you have your favorite holiday survival tips for a stress-free holiday? If so, leave your tips below in the comment section because we could all us some encouragement.
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Until next time…