Easy Ways to Deal with Holiday Stress
Why is #Holiday Stress such a problem and why do some people stress out, become anxious and depressed. Some even get depressed enough to commit suicide over the holiday season. That is such a sad thing because Christmas is supposed to be a happy time. The holiday season is a special time when we can get together to spend time with family and friends. It’s like escaping to a winter wonderland full of festivities, Christmas music and a jolly atmosphere in the streets and shopping malls. Even with all that joy and fun, comes stress. It can’t be avoided. That is why I have created this article… to share with you a few easy ways to deal with holiday stress
What Causes Holiday Stress
There are many things that can cause one to become anxious or even depressed before and during the holiday season. The expectations of social events, gift shopping, and entertaining guests can become a burden for even the most festive of people.
Christmas has lost some of the old fashioned and traditional meaning it once had and has become so commercialised that people feel they have to spend way more than they can comfortably afford. It seems so easy to rack up one or more credit cards and spend the next year or more struggling to pay off the debt and by that time it is time to do it all over again. It’s no wonder some people get anxious and depressed as the holiday season arrives.
Spending too much or thinking that you have to is one of the biggest reasons for arguments between spouses. One spouse wants to go all out for whatever reasons while the other doesn’t want to go overboard and spend the next year paying for it. This causes untold anxiety and relationship issues.
Listed Below are a few reasons why people become stressed and depressed during the holidays
- believing you have to spend a certain amount on each person
- afraid that they will not be happy with your gift if it doesn’t cost enough
- kids are conditioned by advertising and past experience to expect a lot today
- interactive toys and technical gifts can be expensive
- you don’t have a lot of money to spend on Christmas gifts and entertaining
- you feel ashamed that you cannot afford to give a lot
- you fight with your spouse over spending too much money
- you have a broken home and hurt and sadness is all you feel you have
- you have lost a loved one and feel too sad to enjoy Christmas holidays
- you feel your home is not good enough to entertain or have people over
Don’t let these negative feelings and emotions ruin your holiday. Even with all of the above stressing situations, there are ways to reduce stress and anxiety throughout the holiday season and enjoy your family and friends at this special time. Below you will find some easy ways to deal with holiday stress
Set A Limit and Budget Wisely
Shopping can be fun and exciting, but having lots of money to spend on holiday gifts and festivities isn’t always easy, and lack of money causes a lot of frustration, arguments and depression. Christmas can be fun without spending too much money. We and our children have been conditioned by advertising and available credit to spend much more than we should.
Much of the stress that we experience during the holidays is due to financial pressure and setting a budget can be beneficial to both you and your family. Work out together how much you can afford to spend on food and gifts, and stick to it. Respect each other’s views.
Your friends and family will understand because they most likely have the same issues. Only the wealthy can afford to spend whatever they want and not suffer for it. Decide together as a family and extended family to consider setting a specific price range that you all can afford. Don’t feel guilty about it as most people in your family will probably be relieved to be rid of the stress and pressure as well as you.
Here are a few things you might consider to lighten the pressure of holiday spending
- Decide on a specific amount to spend on each person
- Large families might decide to draw names instead of buying gifts for everyone
- Some might decide to buy only for the children
- Families might decide to buy one gift for the adults and more for the children
- Have a potluck Christmas Dinner instead of one couple doing it all
- Give home crafted gifts as much as possible – These are really appreciated
- Create or buy gifts throughout the year instead of leaving it to the last month or so
- Give gifts of baking, pickles, jams, jellies or gifts in a jar
Exercise Can Help Rejuvenate and Reduce Stress
Holidays is a busy time but it is important that you don’t completely cut out exercise during this stressful time.
If you can allot some time to exercise even 15 minutes two or three times a week, you will feel much better and cope with holiday stress in a more positive way. You could go for a brisk walk or jog. Take a swim or a ride on a bike even if you don’t have time for a more extensive exercise routine.
Make Time for Relaxation
We all know how important it is to take some special time for ourselves to relax and get away from all the commotion of the business of life, and holidays is no exception. There are parties and gatherings and we are constantly on the go and surrounded by people, loud music, heavy traffic and lights.
It’s fun to be with family and friends and enjoy talking and laughing but we still need to take some time to get away even for a little while.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and think that you can be and do everything for everyone. Do something you love to do for even 15 or 20 minutes a day even during the holidays and your stress level will thank you for it.
In the evening a warm sudsy bath or shower will relax your mind and body. Put on some relaxing music and light some candles and just enjoy a few minutes of peace. You will be surprised at how much better it will make you feel.
If you do a whole lot of hosting, make sure you delegate- whether you ask everyone to bring a different dish, or you rope in family to take on certain tasks. It is important that you don’t think that you have to do it all.
Indulge a Little but Don’t Forget to Stay Healthy
The holiday season is a time of indulgence but you shouldn’t lose sight of and abandon your health as that will just add to your stress.
Enjoy yourself, but try having healthy snacks before holiday gatherings so you don’t over snack while you’re out. Make sure that you’re getting plenty of sleep, as you are more likely to overindulge after a poor night’s sleep.
Choose Your Battles Wisely
We all have someone in our circle of family and friends that rubs us the wrong way. It’s only natural- not everyone can always agree on everthing. Allowing someone else to get under your skin, though, is only going to ruin their and your holiday and in turn this will increase your stress levels. Learn to pick your battles wisely, and don’t take the bait.
If you do feel that you have a real problem with someone, let it go and set it asidevfor another day and don’t let it ruin your holiday. Even the calmest people can lose their cool during the holidays.
To Sum it Up
Self-care is conscious choice and this is even more true during times of more stress, such as the holiday season. Make sure to take the time and create a deliberate plan! Remember, the holidays are supposed to be a time of fun, family and relaxation, don’t let stress interfere with this great time of year.
Enjoying the holiday with family and friends is the most important part of Christmas or any other holiday for that matter. Take time to consider the points I have made in this article to help you reduce stress and anxiety and don’t forget to take that special time for yourself. Don’t do everything yourself… let others help and just do your part.
You can enjoy the holidays even if you have sadness in your life or you don’t have a lot of money to spend on gifts and festivities. Just enjoy each other and do what you can. Your family will love you for it.