For some the holidays can be an exciting, fun time, but for others the holidays may feel stressful and isolating. The Mayo Clinic suggests these five tips to reduce stress and enjoy the holidays.
Plan Ahead. Whether it be traveling, purchasing gifts or cooking, planning can help alleviate unforeseen stressors. Prior planning can also provide additional time to remedy those stressors that may arise before the holiday.
Stick to Healthy Habits. When it comes to food moderation is key. Try to avoid over eating or eating too much of one thing. Also, do not skip exercising. Regular exercising can actually decrease stress hormones in the brain, and cause you to feel more relaxed.
Be Realistic. There is only so much one can do, so don’t put added stress on yourself with unrealistic expectation. Make sure your goals or planned accomplishments are specific and time bound.
Acknowledge how you feel. If there’s been a recent tragedy or loss in your family, allow yourself to acknowledge those emotions. You aren’t obligated to be happy because it is the holiday’s. If you need to cry or mourn take the time to do so.
Reach out. Seek out holiday events or social gatherings if you are struggling with the holiday blues. Volunteering can also provide a sense of hopefulness and can help lift your spirits while making new friends.
If you are seeking to get involved and don’t know how, contact Laura Cleland, Creating Healthy Communities Project Director at the Meigs County Health Department via Laura.firstname.lastname@example.org or (740) 992-6626.
Laura Cleland is a health educator for the Meigs County Health Department.