De-Stressing the Holidays

By: Dr. Daniel Turo, DC

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year…So Why are We all so Stressed?

We are heading into a beautiful time of the year—the holiday season. A time to be thankful for all that we have, a time to celebrate with family and friends, a time filled with joy and magic, tradition and love. But it can also be a stressful time. An exhausting time. A depressing time. The holidays can become less than merry if we let stress get the better of us.

There are gifts to buy and wrap, cookies to bake, holiday meals to prep, lights to be strung, parties to be celebrated, and Santa appearances to schlep the kids to (or else there might be tantrums to be handled!) Sometimes life gets hectic and our days may become nonstop. You may feel as though it is hard to catch your breath or maybe even a meal or a glass of water. You may even feel the need to make sure every little detail is perfect for a happy holiday. If you love the holidays but get a little caught up in the hustle and bustle, here are some tips to de-stress, remain mindful, and keep your energy up this holiday season.

Be Realistic—Things don’t have to be “perfect.” Everything will get done in the end. And if it doesn’t, that is okay too. Sometimes, we set our standards too high and things don’t always go as planned. But, imperfection is healthy and normal. Focus on the good and what you’ve accomplished.

Being Present is a Present – With a long to-do list, we are all tempted to multi-task and let our minds drift to the next event or item to check off. But doing so can zap the joy from your holiday season. Because being present in the moment is the true gift of any day. And that can be especially accurate when we’re taking in the magic of the holidays. Be present with your family and during holiday activities with your kids and loved ones.

Prioritize and Compromise—As families grow and change, so do traditions. Do your best to be open and flexible so everyone can still enjoy celebrating together in ways that best fit the group’s new dynamic. Consider what is truly important to you and what you might be hanging onto that could be let go. This type of prioritizing can lead to smoother holiday get-togethers and a merrier time for all involved.

Remember that It’s Okay to Say NO—If you feel overwhelmed with too many activities or engagements, friends and family will understand if you might have to skip out on an event or two. Focus on the essential tasks that need to be done and remember that it’s acceptable to put yourself first sometimes.

Don’t Lose Sight of the Reason for the Season—Yes, there are long grocery store and mall lines. There may be more traffic than usual. Or, your green bean casserole didn’t turn out as planned, or better yet, you pull everything out to make that green bean casserole and you’re missing ONE ingredient. Back to the store you go! Try to see the good in things and reflect on the things going right. Reflect on the bigger picture and that there may be other people going through much larger battles this holiday season. Gratitude is the best attitude.

Don’t Completely Abandon Healthy Habits—Stick to your regular meal plans when you can, take daily supplements, especially Vitamin D to keep your immune system intact and increase your water intake. Make time for exercise…even if it is a brisk walk outside or a few extra laps around the mall…it will help clear your mind!

Take a Breather—Find time to spend alone for 15 minutes each day. Listen to relaxing music, read a book, get a massage, try yoga or meditative deep breathing exercises, and restore your inner calm. Diffuse a calming essential oil like eucalyptus. Unplug and unwind.

We hope that these reminders help you reclaim the joy this holiday season!


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Doctor of Chiropractic