7 Tips for Managing Holiday Stress

The holiday season can be a magical time of year; it can also bring on some significant stress. From shopping to cooking to entertaining, our daily activities multiply, making many people feel extremely overwhelmed. In fact, a Healthline Survey concluded that 65 percent of people felt extra stress during the holidays. Not to worry: Here are some tips to help you stay balanced.

Plan Ahead

From mid-November until New Year’s, our schedules can get very crowded. Put all your events, shopping days and family arrivals on a calendar. Identify your super busy weeks and try to shift some activities around, so you’re not extremely overwhelmed during those weeks.

If you are hosting any holiday events or parties, plan your menu and determine which foods can be prepared a day or two before the big dinner. Additionally, set a budget that you can actually afford and stick to it!

Pace Yourself

The holidays have a way of making us rush around trying to get everything done. I’ve been there: I think I can run into a store, do some quick shopping, and get back home in time for my next task. The reality is that other people are trying to do the same thing, so there are longer lines, less items available, and let’s not forget about finding a parking space.

Try scheduling more time for yourself to get it all done. If you think shopping will take an hour, maybe add another 30 minutes for it. And if it does go smoothly, you now have the gift of time.

Make Time for Yourself

Speaking of the gift of time, it’s important that you make some for yourself. Treat yourself to a massage, go for a drive, spend time with friends — whatever helps you take your mind off of your extra responsibilities.

Holiday stress doesn’t have to leave you in an overwhelmed state. Add “you time” to your calendar; it’s something to look forward to as you tackle each of your tasks. 

Maintain Healthy Habits

If you’re like most Americans, this is also the season for eating. It’s way too easy to let your healthy habits go for a few weeks and indulge in all that’s around you. If unhealthy foods are at your workplace, bring healthy snack options with you. If you’re hosting a big dinner, send your guests home with leftovers, so you don’t finish everything yourself. If you exercise on a regular basis, keep going through the holidays. This is a great form of stress release. My point is to keep up with your healthy habits and keep your temptations in check.

Ask for Help

We’re all human and can use a little help from time to time. The holiday season is a great time of year to ask friends and family for a hand. Ask for someone to make a side dish or to pick up items from the grocery store. Maybe ask someone to watch the kids while you get stuff done. It’s not only okay to ask for help, it provides an opportunity for others to give the present of their time (and a chance for you to receive that gift).

Limit Family Time

This tip may sound strange, considering that the holidays are a time for family to be together. But let’s be honest: It’s not always easy to be around all of your family for extended periods of time. It’s not that you don’t love Uncle Mike, but if you hear the ice skating story one more time…you get my point.

Consider asking family to stay at a hotel instead of having them stay at your house. This gives you (and them) a break and time to reset for the next day.

If you want to try something the whole family can do together, have everyone take the free Geomic Code Assessment and compare word clouds! Taking the assessment can be fun and informative.

Be Kind to Yourself

My last tip for you is to be nice (especially to yourself). We can be very hard on ourselves when things don’t go as planned. Give yourself a break! If things get a little crazy, make sure you do not speak to yourself in a negative way. Learn to celebrate all of your little victories and pat yourself on the back for accomplishing everything you have done. Criticizing yourself when mistakes happen will only add to your stress. The best thing about making mistakes is that all of us make them — and can learn from them so that we can move forward (and be nicer to others because we aren’t taking ourselves too seriously).

I hope these tips help you brave the holiday season like a champion! Keeping your stress level down can make the whole experience that much more enjoyable. If you have any tips that have worked well for you, please share them in the comments below. And consider giving The Geomic Code: Unlocking the Mystery of Unconscious Choice as a gift!

On behalf of the Geomic Code team, I wish you a happy, healthy and joyous Holiday Season!

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