The American Psychological Association (APA) found nearly half of all women in the United States experience heightened stress during the holidays, which puts their health at risk. The APA also learned that during this time, 41 percent of women use food and 28 percent use alcohol.
Here are 7 Tips to Relieve Holiday Stress.
Take calm-down breaks. Soon after you awake, close your eyes, take several deep breaths and meditate or just relax. Imagine yourself in a beautiful place, think of a happy memory or visualize yourself succeeding at a cherished goal. “Quieting down your mind before you begin your day can help it get off to a great start and things will flow for you,” says Debra Berndt, an expert in creative visualization and hypnosis.
Put on rose-colored glasses. When people try to push their bad habits on you during this holiday season, tune into their motivations. For instance, before you get annoyed step into their shoes. Then graciously thank them for their misguided attention. Rather than view your situation with annoyance, be grateful instead.
Get moving. Perhaps one of the best ways to overcome stress during the holidays or any other time is to exercise regularly. Research shows that physical activity not only boosts your fitness and energy levels but can also elevate your moods. In addition, exercise has been found to reduce anger, tension, fatigue and confusion.
Go for real foods mostly. Inevitably, at this time of year, you’ll be tempted with sugary, empty-calorie “treats” just about wherever you go. But to be your most energetic, focused and happy self, it’s best to eat foods that grow on trees or on the ground (vegetables and fruits) and to choose healthy fats (such as olive oil and flax seeds), lean protein (such as fish and organic chicken) and legumes, nuts and seeds.
Take polite portions of “comfort” foods and drinks. During the holidays, it’s easy to “fall off the wagon” and use or over-use alcohol, sugar and caffeine. It’s best to think before you treat your body like a trash can instead of a temple.
Prepare “Nice To Do For Me” and “Need To Do For You” lists. Writing down all that you have to do during the holidays will help you realize how doable your tasks are. Be realistic as to what you put on your lists. Then start tackling one item from each list in turn. By alternating between lists, you won’t feel deprived, because you’re being good to yourself. When you practice extreme self-care and put yourself first, you are then fully available to others without resentment or anger.
Be Generous. One of the best ways to stay calm, content and cheerful this time of year is to act generously with your loved ones, co-workers and friends. This doesn’t have to mean you’re spending a lot of money. You can be generous with your compliments. You can generously offer to do a loved one’s dreaded errand. When you are creative with your gifts and thank you’s, people will appreciate your real, heartfelt sentiments.
WE WISH YOU A STRESS FREE DECEMBER!