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10 Stress Reducing Tips for the Holidays

By Tony and Lori Jackson

  1. Don’t abandon your healthy habits ~ When life becomes difficult, we typically let go of our self care first. Remember: when you feel good, you can see things better.
  2. Take time for you ~ If you need a break, take one. The more we push ourselves, the harder it can be to recover. Taking a 30 minute walk or going to a movie can change your view drastically.
  3. Stick to a budget ~ Just because it’s the holidays does not mean you have to spend beyond your means. Set goals with family members or spouses ($50 limits and it must be hand made, etc.), because breaking the bank isn’t worth breaking you.
  4. Learn to say no ~ Let people know you are starting new traditions and that you are able to do some things, but can’t do them all. Telling a person no is a form of setting clear boundaries and improving self care. Saying no does not make you bad.
  5. Find joy in the small things ~ Create new family traditions by making decorations, having evening story time, writing stories about your favorite holiday memories with your family, etc. Create things that make you happy.
  6. Set aside differences ~ Nearly all families have their challenges. Find a safe partner to support you through the holidays, and set aside ill feelings toward others until a later date.
  7. Reduce the need to fill it up ~ Many families feel the need to fill the space under the tree. If this is the case for you, buy a smaller tree. Make a plan for a realistic holiday and feel more comfortable about sizing down.
  8. Acknowledge your feelings ~ Recognizing what we are feeling allows us to own our personal space and embrace our imperfections. No one expects you to be perfect, so love yourself and your feelings, no matter what they are.
  9. Be realistic ~ Talk with your family members about what you are able to do and then make a plan. There is no harm in being you. Embrace it and all will be as it should.
  10. Reach Out ~ Don’t be afraid to ask for support when you need it. Talk with friends, family or professionals. There is no shame in being supported.

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