Holiday Stress: Staying Balanced

Attention: open in a new window. PDFPrintE-mail

StressYou’ve developed a realistic plan, divided your time, and you’ve set a budget. Now how do you manage the stress that comes with the inevitable (and often unavoidable) deviations from the plan? Stay stress free by being self-aware and balanced. Balance is a key concept at this time of year, and these tips will help you keep perspective throughout the holiday season.

  • Maintain healthy habits. It just doesn't do your body any good to overindulge in took much food, alcohol, or even medications for anxiety, pain, and sleep. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt. Get plenty of both sleep and physical activity.
  • Acknowledge your feelings. It is just as important to recognize that your feelings about the holiday season. This could be a very emotional time of year for you. If someone close to you has recently died or you can't be with loved ones, it is very normal to feel sadness and grief. It is okay to take time to cry or express your feelings. You can't force yourself to be happy just because it's the holiday season. Create a positive dialogue for yourself, reminding yourself what you love about this time of year, and what is important.
  • Seek professional help if you need it. Sometimes, our reactions to all the activity and expectations causes more stress than we can handle or ease. Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself feeling persistently sad or anxious, bothered by physical complaints, unable to sleep, irritable and hopeless, unable to face routine chores, and at what feels like the worst, feel depressed and unable to enjoy the holiday. If these feelings last for a while, talk to your doctor or a mental health professional.

Next week we'll share some communication tips that may prove helpful when you are confronted with overwhelming demands and difficult decisions. 

Read the other blogs in the Holiday Stress series:

Sources of Holiday Stress

Preparing for the Holiday Season

Family Profiles

"Like" FamilyAware.org