Health Advocate Blog

Tips to stress less this holiday season

Everyday life can be hectic enough, but with year-end deadlines at work, gift shopping, family visits, and party planning, the holidays often bring a new level of stress. However, it’s possible to tap into the holiday spirit in ways that make you feel delighted rather than drained. This year, resist the temptation to fill up your calendar and to-do list, and use the tips below to help you take some time for yourself to rest, relax, and enjoy the holidays.

Take a day off from your to-do list.  Plan a day (or more) of doing nothing but kicking back and relaxing.

Schedule time for yourself. If you still have vacation time, use it! Even if you are not traveling this year, it is important to step away from work and do things that you enjoy.

Delegate and plan. Taking on everything by yourself can increase your stress level. Don’t be afraid to lighten your load by asking for help.

Take care of yourself. Find time to exercise and stay active – this can be taking a brisk outdoor walk or doing a quiet yoga practice in your living room. Continue to eat what nourishes your body (avoid filling up on holiday goodies!). Maintain a healthy sleep schedule.

Figure out what activities are truly meaningful to you. Whether it’s volunteering your time to those less fortunate, attending lots of parties, doing fun activities with the kids, or baking treats from scratch, think about what you truly enjoy doing and focus the majority of your time and energy on those activities.

Enjoy time spent with loved ones, savor the traditional dishes you eat together, and appreciate the sights, sounds, tastes, and feelings of the holidays.

Do things because you want to, not because you must. Doing things out of obligation can take away your sense of enjoyment. Make your favorite activities your priority and avoid trying to do everything.

Focusing on what makes you happy this holiday season will go a long way toward helping you and those around you enjoy the festivities while reducing feelings of stress and overwhelm.