Holiday Season have you Stressing Out?

Who am I kidding...we are only in the height of it all with parties, cookie swaps, shopping, decorating, and mixed emotions are at an all time high. Of course it’s stressing!

I have to admit though, these past few weeks have gotten to the best of me with so much happening at once. Things just got so hectic to the point where I wasn’t eating well, exercising consistently, not getting enough sleep, and experiencing feelings of bitterness.

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This is highly unlike me, especially as a fitness and wellness pro who obviously advocates living a healthy lifestyle. But you know, we all have our weaknesses and I admit, I do tend to bite off more than I can chew at times, which easily leads to overwhelm.  

The other morning when I woke up something felt off, and went for a light run in the cold to clear my mind.  Then it hit me...I needed to do me! In other words slow down and recharge my batteries.

With that, I ended up cancelling plans in the city, declined an invite to a Christmas party, rescheduled a business meeting, and spent time alone to completely recharge.  It worked and I feel so much better!

Look, our to-do lists are never ending...anytime of the year, not just the holiday season, and it’s our right to say no or to change our minds.  Sure, it’s easier said than done and we appreciate any invites or opportunities, and definitely don’t want to cause tension or come off as selfish, but when it comes down to your prioritizing your health and well being, it’s not selfish, it’s self-care, and saying no becomes easier.

Here are 3 of my tips to combat the holiday stress:  

1.) Lay off the caffeine

Caffeine has it’s benefits such as increasing metabolism, mental alertness, and if you’re a coffee lover like me, it just tastes so darn good. But it also stimulates areas in the brain that cause overwhelm and therefore more stress. Not saying to avoid any sources of caffeine that you enjoy, instead be more mindful of it during periods of stress.

2.) Step back and evaluate the situation

The thought of all the holiday to-do’s is stressful enough, “this party, that party, baking, shopping, decorating, sending cards”, it doesn’t seem to end. Instead take a minute and think why you may be stressing out. Is there a gathering with relatives you only see once a year, invite to a party that you don’t really want to go to? Remember you have every right to decline an invite, change your mind, and say no to anyone and anything that’s going to spread your bandwidth too thin. Evaluating the situation leaves you with a more focused approach, placing healthy boundaries, which enhances your health and well-being.

3.) Ask for help

It’s taxing on your health and well-being to try to “do it all”, this leaves to burnout. Trust me this is a valuable lesson I’ve learned over the years. Asking for help is a sign of strength, and reaching out to individuals who love, support, and only want the best for you is rewarding. Besides, it’s a great way to strengthen your relationship.

How do you cope with stress during during the holiday season? Hit on the comment icon below and tell me.