The holiday season often brings unwelcome guests — anxiety and stress. And it's no wonder. It’s the time of year that presents an exhausting assortment of demands — parties, holiday shopping, cooking, cleaning and entertaining the in-laws, just to name a few.
But with some practical tips, you can minimize the stress that accompanies the holidays. You may even end up enjoying them.
- Give yourself a break.When stress is at its peak, it's hard to stop and regroup. If you’re having a hard time dealing with a particular relative, or family time in general, it’s OK to express your feelings. Don’t force yourself to be happy simply because it's the holidays
- Connect with your community.If you’re alone on the holidays or simply feeling lonely or isolated, seek out your community or social events for support and companionship. Volunteering your time to help others can also be beneficial in lifting your spirits and broaden your circle of friends.
- Be real.The holidays don't have to be perfect or “just like they used to be.” As families change and grow, traditions often change as well. Choose a few meaningful ones to hold on to and, be open to creating new rituals and memories.
- Resolve differences.You can’t change people, only your perception. So try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don't live up to your expectations. Set aside grievances and be understanding if others get distressed or frustrated when something goes awry. Chances are they're feeling the effects of holiday stress and anxiety as well.
- Stick to a budget.Before you go gift and food shopping, budget accordingly and decide how much money you’re willing to spend. You can’t buy happiness with a mountain of gifts. If you’re looking for an alternative to traditional gift giving, donate to a charity in someone's name – this will add an element of do-gooding to your holiday spirit.
- Plan accordingly.Set aside designated times for shopping, baking, visiting friends and other activities and plan ahead as much as you can – whether it’s your menus or your shopping lists. That'll help prevent last-minute scrambling to get everything you need. And make sure to enlist help for party prep and cleanup.
- Learn to say no.Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and colleagues will understand if you can't participate in every project or activity. If it's not possible to say no when your boss asks you to work overtime, try to remove something else from your agenda to make up for the lost time.
- Maintain healthy habits.The holidays are not a free-for-all. Overindulgence will only add to your stress and guilt. Have a healthy snack before holiday parties so that you don't go overboard on sweets, cheese or drinks. Get plenty of sleep. Stay active and incorporate physical activity into each day.
- Include Hemp oil extract in your daily routine.Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed and anxious. Hemp oil extract has been known to alleviate stress and anxiety as it supports your body's own endocannabinoid system, the regulatory system that helps you feel balanced and at ease. Hemp oil extract can help enhance your overall mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being. It has also been known to improve sleep cycles and relaxation, reduce pain and inflammation, support healthy skin, and keep you alert and refreshed.
- Make your self-care a priority.Take some time for yourself. Carve out 15 minutes alone, without any distractions, to unwind and rejuvenate. Allow yourself to clear your mind and restore inner calm, whether taking a brisk walk or hike, listening to music, getting a massage or reading a book.
With a little planning and some positive thinking, you can enjoy the holidays instead of dreading them. Recognize the holiday triggers, whether financial pressures or personal demands, so you can tackle them head on and forge ahead with peace and joy this holiday season.