Holiday Health

5 Tell Us Tips to Promote Relaxation through the Holiday Season.

With all the holiday festivities and celebrations comes exhaustion, increased stress and in some cases, depression. In many regions, daylight becomes scarce, encouraging us to retreat home and curl up, but the season requires attendance at holiday parties, family gatherings, school activities and much more. This is in direct competition with the overwhelming feeling to hibernate. Ugh! With all the wishing of holiday joy and cheer as we rush from one errand or gathering to the next, how do we find the moments to stop and experience the essence of the season?

Cutting down on the amount of events and presents is a great shortcut to end the madness, but sometimes this is not a realistic solution. Remember that a little goes a long way, and go big or go home doesn’t need to apply to the holidays.

  1. Schedule your obligations realistically. We all want to see people we enjoy, so make time for those gatherings and don’t feel you need to show up with special individualized gifts for everyone. Sometimes, a small token of appreciation, or a hug, is all that is necessary.
  2. Find time to recharge. Whatever you do to find relaxation in your life, triple it during the holidays. Catching up with family and friends may be wonderful in some cases, but can also be quite stressful in others. Allow yourself some extra time to regenerate. Give yourself a gift of massage, aromatherapy or tee time – whatever you need!
  3. Stay “present”! Most stress lives in our past or future, and not in the present. Stay in the moment, notice the details, hear people’s stories, take a bite of the cheesecake. You will likely find this to be more enjoyable than running through a list of things undone – and if not, maybe this gathering or moment should not be on the list of places to go!
  4. Enjoy the food. Most people gain 5 pounds through the holidays, but this also coincides with less daylight, lower activity levels and the organic process to hibernate because there is less food through winter. The body is ready to gain weight. As long as you are not overindulging, don’t beat yourself up for the few extra calories and pounds.
  5. Conduct your own study. Say hello with a smile and see how many folks smile back. Research shows that smiling is contagious and can lower feelings of anxiety and stress, (and a compliment does even more!). Improve your wellbeing and the mood of others by offering up a smile – even if you are both tugging on the last coveted trendy toy of the season!

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