The holidays are supposed to a holly, jolly time of admiring lights and spending time with family. So why is it that some people feel the desire to rip all their hair out? While the holidays are pleasant and enjoyable for some, they can also be one of the most stressful times of the year. People are so focused on planning parties, getting last minute gifts, or cooking the perfect meal that they forget to take care of themselves. And as we’ve stated before: self-care is integral to mental and physical health.
People most commonly worry about financial and social obligations. There is a pressured feeling to purchase a certain amount of gifts, and you can multiply that stress to infinity if you are are maxing out credit cards. Additionally, there is the added stress of seeing extended family members, who you may not get along with. How do you take care of your mental and physical health? Let’s explore some options.
One of the best ways to de-stress is by taking 10-15 minutes out of your day to meditate. Find a quiet, comforting place to focus on your breathing and exhale the stress from your body. If you cannot sit in silence, lay down in a comfortable area and listen to a guided meditation video online.
Clear Your Head Outside:
Don’t let the thought of getting into a political argument with your father in law make you feel like you can’t go on. Take a walk outside or go for a hike because looking at nature actually increases positive thoughts. This is also a great way to promote exercise during the holidays, which leads us to our next point.
Head to the Gym:
Many people are all about the “get healthy” New Year’s resolution. Try getting into the gym during the holidays because exercising boosts endorphin production. These bad boys promote a better, overall feeling and help lower stress levels. If you don’t have a gym membership, try this at home workout routine.
Don’t Overdo It:
One of the most important things you can do is to no overdo it. What we mean by this is that you should have a plan of attack at the dinner table. Eat mindfully, not emotionally. Fill half of your plate with vegetables before you go for anything else. This way you can ensure you’re eating a lower calorie meal. If you don’t follow through with your healthy intentions, don’t let it stress you out. Be proud of yourself for recognizing the eating habits and do what you can to get back on track.
Use your holiday vacation time to unplug from devices. Stay off your email and social media and focus on things that are not screen-related. Try to read a book you’ve been wanting to delve into, or play some board/party games with the family (just don’t let it get heated). If you need the screen, pop in a movie for the whole family to watch.
Float Into Relaxation:
The field of alternative health and wellness is constantly expanding, and it can beneficial to take advantage of the many options that are available. Floatation therapy can be a great option to naturally relieve stress. Not only do you leave the worries and noise of the outside world behind in an isolation tank, but you also get to absorb the natural minerals in the water. The dense magnesium content is greatly beneficial for decreasing stress levels. If this sounds too intense, take a bath and relax!