It’s not uncommon to hear that the holiday season often brings stress, anxiety and depression. People are more likely to feel overwhelmed and difficulty managing their feelings during the holidays with all the crazy schedules, parties, shopping and “pressure to please” with that “just right gift” and expectation to show up for all the gatherings.
We’re learning more and more about the power stress has over people in general, but it seems to be heightened over the holiday season. Did you know that food high in fat and sugar (aka junk food) is worse for your health when you’re under stress or depressed?
The holidays are filled with reasons to eat, drink and be merry. Temptations are everywhere, making it even more difficult to make good choices when we are met with the mentality, “it’s just for the holidays”…… especially when we have emotional connection to the holiday traditions, smells, and settings.
Here are some easy to remember strategies to manage your stress through the next few weeks of celebrations:
- Acknowledge what you are feeling and talk about it. Find someone you trust and tell them how you feel. Research supports this simple method of “talking it out” as bringing relief to overwhelming feelings.
- Reach out. If you feel lonely or isolated, find other people to spend time with, even if it is just a short amount of time, changing your disposition and/or environment refreshes your brain to focus on the change its experiencing.
- Meditate and practice mindfulness. Make time for yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh your mind. Finding something that reduces stress has many positive benefits. Pray. Recite the words to your favorite scripture or lyrics that bring positive meaning into your life. Practice breathing and muscle relaxation techniques.
- Learn to say no. Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed and even depressed.
- Don’t forget about your daily healthy habits. Balanced meals, exercise, and sleep.
As simple as these things seem, did you know the #1 day of admission to hospitals and emergency rooms for heart attacks is December 25th?
Why? Because we tend to lose sight of our nutrition, sleep, and time to refresh the most during the months of November and December due to all the holiday excitement.
If you, or someone you know, seems to be overly burdened by the stress of the holidays, please reach out to us for an appointment to discuss specific needs.
Holiday hours and phone appointments are available on an as needed basis