A Happier Holiday

holidaystressshrunk25Christmas is a most wonderful time of the year: Family, friends, lights, music, traditions of faith, and presents. It’s a time to show gratitude for the gifts that have been given.  At work it’s a time to decorate, extra treats in the break room and the annual holiday party.  With the joy of the season comes extra projects, changes in work and family schedules, more financial responsibilities and return of long lost friends and family members.

While the changes of the season produce excitement and joy, the season also produces a fair amount of stress for many people. Because it’s Christmas, it’s not seen as a good time to acknowledge or talk about those stressful and uncomfortable feelings that often occur around the holidays.

Several ideas of easing the stress and pressure of the holiday season are worth considering.

  • Deliberately plan and schedule some healthy and comforting time for you. This could be continuing your exercise routine, having coffee with a trusted friend, or spending some time with one of your favorite hobbies. It is all too common to dispense with these things to make time for holiday activities.
  • Maybe rethink starting your diet the week before Christmas. A more practical goal is to try to eat moderately. Also if you are the Christmas cook try not to force food on your guests. They may be trying their best to handle health issues.
  • Practice a small act of kindness each day to people you may not know. Smiling and saying hello to a coworker you may not know well or giving a driver a break when they need to get into your lane will make you feel better about the whole day.
  • Schedule some alone time if you need it and try not to feel guilty. And if you are going to be alone for the holidays and are not sure how that is going to go for you, plan some specific activities ahead of time. Waiting for something to happen is not the way to go.
  • There are lots of other self-care possibilities that can make your Christmas more stress free and pleasant for you and those around you. Taking care of yourself for the holidays is not selfish.

Have a blessed and happy holiday season.

If you need help during this holiday season, LSS Counseling Services is here.  Give us a call today at 1-855-334-2953 or visit http://www.counseling.lsssd.org. Live your life to the fullest.

Mel Harrington
Counseling Services

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