‘Tis the season for anxiety and stress! If you’re longing for a slow, sweet holiday season this year, give these 9 lifestyle tips to ease holiday stress a try.
You see, the holiday season, a time of joy, good cheer, and making memories, is often overshadowed by stress, pressure, and anxiety for many of us.
Sure there are many positive aspects to the season, but more often than not, we find ourselves focusing on the negative ones.
Perhaps the thing that steals your festive holiday spirit is:
- an overly busy schedule,
- stress over getting ready for a family gathering,
- the financial burden of finding and purchasing the perfect gifts,
- memories of loss or tragedy,
- feeling tired and run down with no end in sight, or
- any other thing that takes our mindset off of the joy of the season.
And while many of these situations and feelings are commonly experienced during this season, there are some things we can do to slow down and shift our mindset into a more positive state. By doing these things, we slowly begin to focus more on the good things the season brings which makes less room for the negative and helps ease holiday stress at the same time.
I recently shared a bit about my personal anxieties during this season of the year in my latest letter. Feelings of anxiety are something quite new to me, but it is an emotional response many people experience for a reason. So while I’ve accepted the fact that these feelings will emerge during this season of the year, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing I can do to ease them or support my body through this time.
With that said, I want to share some lifestyle tips that I’m trying to help ease holiday stress for myself this year. Most of these things can be incorporated into daily life right away, but some are to best practiced throughout the year as well.
Lifestyle Tips to Ease Holiday Stress
- Make a list of things you enjoy about the holidays and incorporate more of those things into the season. Maybe it’s holiday lights and decor? If so, put those things everywhere in your home. Perhaps it’s going to memorable places with your family. If so, schedule it in your planner once a week. It could even be as simple as listening to holiday music all day, every day! No matter what it is, take note of what you love and do more of it!
- Keep a running list of gift ideas for friends and family on your phone throughout the year. When it’s time to purchase a gift, you’ll have several ideas to choose from, and you won’t feel pressured to purchase less than ideal gifts last minute.
- Speaking of gifts, set aside a certain amount of money each month for holiday gifts and store it somewhere safe. This can be in a separate bank account or in an envelope or jar. When it’s time to purchase holiday gifts, the money you’ve saved can be your budget or simply help to ease the financial burden of the season.
- Set up an email address just for promotional emails. Sales emails are the way brands share their great products with us, but they sure can clutter up your inbox and make it feel chaotic sometimes. Having a separate email account for these types of subscriptions can really save your sanity. Plus, when you are ready to purchase something, you can simply open this inbox and browse for the brand or product you’re looking for.
- Support your nervous system with this Herbal Academy nerve tea recipe that’s filled with botanicals that relax and soothe the mind and emotions. This tea can be drank daily to minimize that frayed nerve feeling we often experience during the holidays.
- Schedule a maid service to come to do some deep cleaning in your home a week or so before a holiday gathering. If that’s not an option, download the Fly Lady app (Apple/Android) and start working your way through it now to get your home clean and ready for get-togethers during the holiday season in a more manageable way.
- Making food for the holidays? Try to keep it simple. You can find free holiday meal plans online or search for individual recipes. Look for those that call for simple ingredients and don’t require a lot of prep time. Print recipes out, make a shopping list, and place your holiday meal grocery orders online if that’s an option for you.
- What helps you feel more relaxed? Is it a warm bath with herbal bath salts? Perhaps it’s a relaxing cup of tea or a glass of mulled wine? Maybe it getting thoughts and feelings out of your head and out onto paper? Whatever it is that helps you to destress, practice making time for these things every few days during the holidays. Oh, and don’t forget to get enough sleep at night. If there’s one self-care activity we should be doing consistently, this is it!
- While we can rarely control the ugly things others say or do to us, we can reframe them in a more positive way so we don’t become bitter about them. I recently read how a famous artist placed a used cigarette bud on a black velevet background and framed it in an exquisite gold frame — taking something ugly and dirty that most people would pay no mind to and turning it into a work of art. So the next time someone says or does something unkind (or the next time a hurtful memory pops up), think about how you can take that ugly situation or memory and reframe it in a beautiful way. It will likely take some effort on your part, but it’s worth it. It’s sort of like the Japanese art of kintsugi, where broken pottery pieces are put back together with gold and made into something more beautiful.
So there you go, friends — 9 lifestyle tips to ease holiday stress this year. I’m trying to take this advice and implement it into my own life as much as possible as well. I hope you will to because we all deserve to have a joy-filled season full of good memories.
Love and light,