Holiday stress is something we all deal with. Between the shopping, the parties, the cards, the family gatherings, and the cooking, it can be difficult not to get overwhelmed during this busy time of year. Each person experiences holiday stress differently because it can be caused by so many different factors.
Holiday stress is most commonly caused by relationships, finances, and physical demands. This time of year brings lots of family gatherings, and often you see family members you see at no other time of the year. The interaction between all of these family members can cause conflict and tension. If you find yourself without certain loved ones during this time of year, you might feel particularly sad or lonely. Financial strain is also common during the holidays. Buying gifts, traveling, and engaging in special entertainment such as holiday shows or special meals out can become a financial burden. Physical demands are also a common cause of holiday stress. Finding the time to shop, attend parties, cook, and spend time with your family can become physically exhausting. Knowing these causes of holiday stress is important to finding ways to minimize it.
The most important way to minimize holiday stress is to set realistic expectations. As families change, traditions will often change too. Each year, think about which traditions you are able to keep and identify those that might need to change. If a tradition might need to change, think about why you enjoy that tradition and try to incorporate what you like in another way. If you love seeing your entire family together, but are unable to get everyone together at one time, try emailing pictures or video. Being able to accept changing family traditions is key to avoiding disappointment during the holidays.
Setting realistic timeframes is also important in minimizing holiday stress. With so many things to do, planning can help you structure your time so all of the important things get done. Pick specific days to visit family, cook and bake, and go shopping. Making lists can help minimize the chance you will forget something and help you avoid last minute chaos. Prioritizing your activities and saying no to those you simply can’t fit in will also help you manage stress. By only agreeing to the activities you really love, you will have more fun, more time, and less stress.
Sticking to a budget can remove a lot of financial strain during the holidays. Set a budget for how much you can afford to spend on gifts, food, and other activities during the holidays. Once your budget is set, do not go over it. Making homemade gifts or suggesting a gift exchange at work or at home is a great way to stay on budget while still having the joy of giving to others.
Remember to take time out for yourself to rest and enjoy all of the festivities. Do not give up your healthy habits such as getting exercise, proper sleep, and maintaining healthy eating habits during this busy time. Keeping up these healthy habits allows your body to recuperate and helps you to avoid becoming worn down or fatigued. Also, when you are doing all of your holiday activities, try to really live in the moment and enjoy them while they are happening. If you find your mind wandering to other tasks you need to do, stop and refocus on what is going on at the time.
Finally, when selecting your New Year’s Resolutions, really think about how they will positively impact your life and how you are going to accomplish them. The most common New Year’s Resolutions are to quit smoking, lose weight, begin exercising, or improve your diet. Once you have picked your resolution, make a plan for how you will accomplish your new goal. Identify resources you might need to help you along the way. Consider alternatives such as auriculotherapy for weight loss or smoking cessation, a nutrition evaluation from your chiropractor to improve your diet, or chiropractic care to ease that ache or pain that has kept you from exercising.
For more information on auriculotherapy, nutritional evaluations, chiropractic care, or to speak with a chiropractor in the Edwardsville, IL area, call Dr. Emily Brueggeman at 618-692-0000 . Ask for a free Invitation to Health which includes a consultation and screening to determine if chiropractic can help you.