Holiday Stress Got You Down? Here’s How To Stay Balanced

You’re in charge of planning the office party, your flight is delayed, your parents want to talk politics… Navigate holiday stress with these 5 tips.

The most wonderful time of the year, a season of warmth and light. While the holidays are a great time to slow down and connect with loved ones, the final months of the year aren’t always cheery. From the pressures of hosting others to challenging family dynamics and even travel hiccups, sometimes we’re left feeling pretty stressed. 

A good thing to remind yourself during periods of overwhelm is that you’re not alone. Stress and anxiety are a natural part of life, and something we all experience. As you navigate this holiday season, consider these tips as a way to find balance: 

1. Make Time For Yourself
The office party is coming up, you’ve been invited to four different family parties, and your high school friends want to plan a Thanksgiving weekend reunion. It’s hard to name a time of year that requires as much of your social battery. Your schedule may be packed, but it’s important to care for yourself first. From a morning walk to an hour spent reading a book, set aside time that’s just for you. This may mean saying “no” to a few invites, but will allow you the space you need to stay grounded. 

2. Set and Communicate Boundaries 
Boundaries are so important during the holiday season, as they allow us to communicate our needs and expectations to those we love. A few examples of healthy boundaries? Anything from how involved you’ll be in the holiday festivities to conversations you’re willing to have, or not willing to have, and even which foods or beverages you’re comfortable consuming. 

Take a moment to think about some of the things that are stressing you out about the holiday season. What would help lessen these stressors? Make a list, and identify which of these changes could be made by communicating with those you love. While it can be challenging to speak up and express our boundaries, doing so helps lessen stress, and creates space for our needs to be respected. 

3. Accept Your Differences 
Sometimes, differing opinions, backgrounds, or lifestyle choices can lead us to feel at odds with others in our lives. Try your best to accept the people in your life for who they are, rather than expecting them to meet your own ideals. This can help keep tension at bay, and may even present the opportunity for you to learn something new about how a friend or family member perceives the world. 

4. Your Presence is a Present 
The holidays are a time where presents and consumerism abound. While giving and receiving gifts can be a wonderful way to express love, we may feel pressure to “wow” with really creative (or even expensive) presents. Remember that it’s the thought, not the cost or extravagance, that counts. Being present with those you love is the greatest gift of all. 

5. Don’t Forget About Your Routines
It’s easy to throw your routines out the window when the holidays roll around, but that consistency is what helps us stay balanced. Try your best to wake up and go to bed around the same time you normally would to keep your circadian rhythm in check, and stay committed to the routines that make you feel best (maybe that’s a movement routine, a morning routine, or even a wind-down ritual!). 

Whatever festivities are in store for you this season, following these tips will help you minimize stress and feel grounded, so you can focus on soaking up all it has to offer. If you’re still feeling anxiety, one of our all-natural remedies can help. See a few of our top picks below:

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