Thursday, December 13, 2012

Ideas for Coping with Holiday Season Stress

While the holiday season can be full of fun, there are also aspects of it that can be extremely stressful. Here it's important to note that not all stress is actually bad - there are both good and bad stressors. However, both types of stress can take a toll on you emotionally and physically, so it's important to have some ideas about how to make sure you are able to relax during the holidays.

Here are a few tips for some of the more common stressful situations:

  • Grief and sadness - Holidays can be especially hard if you have recently lost someone, but even if the loss was not recent it can still cause feelings of sadness and grief. It's important to recognize those feelings and take time to express them. Make use of your support system during these times, or consider contacting a professional counselor, who can help you find productive ways to work through your emotions.
  • Interpersonal relationships - It can be difficult to juggle all of the demands on our time and attention over the holidays! It's important, though, to learn to carefully and realistically assess your situation, and to learn to say "no" when that is what best fits your needs. If you will be around others with whom you typically have differences, try to have a plan for how to avoid conflict, if possible. Also, plan ahead to schedule in time for yourself - even if it's only a few minutes alone! - so that you can regroup and refresh. 
  • Money and societal ideals - Commercialism is rampant during this time of year, and it can be easy to feel especially stressed if you are on a tight budget. Create a list and decide how much you can afford to spend before you go out and shop, and then stick to it! Remember that many of the idealized versions of the holiday that we see in the media are truly unrealistic. Dig down to what you and your family consider to be the true meaning of the season and focus on celebrating in your own way. This is how traditions get started! 
For more tips on how to beat stress this season, check out these helpful articles: 
Do you have any tips you can share on how you beat holiday stress? We would love to hear your comments!

No comments: