- Mental Health
How to Reduce your Stress during the Holiday Season
These are definately trying times. We all know the economy is in poor standing making life more stressful. With the holidays coming up that even compunds everything. The stress of having to make the holidays joyful for you and your loved ones may feel overwhelming at this time. Take time to recognize some of the symptoms of stress and know what to do to for your own mental health.
Side effects of stress
Did you know that stress can cause a wide variety of cognitive, emotional, physical and behavioral symptoms?
Stress can cause cognitive effects,emotional effects, nd create physical symptoms.
Examples of cognative effects include loss of concentration, anxiousness and racing thoughts. Stress can emotionally affect you by making you more easily irritable, and moody. You may also exprience difficulty relaxing. Stress can affect you physically in many ways. Stress lowers your immune system making you more susceptible to colds. You can experience physical symptoms through stomach upset or tightness of the chest. Stress can even control your beviros. You can do something like exercise to excess or eat way too much or way too little. It can also affect your sleep patterns
How can you handle stress
My best advice to you is to get out there and move! Get you heart pumping and your endorphins going and it will make any problem seem ten times less intense. I walk.. outside preferably but a treadmill will do too. It gives me time to think through the problem and generate a few solutions as well.
Exercise is very important to relieve stress! Sometimes you can work out a problem in your head by just taking a short walk. You will lose yourself in thought and the solution will come to you effortlessly.
It is important to recognize that if you can't take care of yourself then you won't be worth a darn to anyone else!. So don't be afraid to take time for yourself. Immerse yourself in a hobby, go for a walk or chat with friends. You got a difficult problem you are too emotionally invested in? Go to dinner with a friend. Get some objective advice over Chinese.
Make some time for YOU! Take time out to gain perspective on your situation or stressor. If you like to craft, craft out your frustratons. I often find when my mind is concentrating on omething else I come up with a solution to my problem! If you like blogging then take time out of your day to do what YOU want to do. Alot of time our frustration comes from not having control of our daily schedule. I like to use polymer clay. I knead out the dough and begin planning my project. When the project is complete then I feel like I have done something productive.
If you cannot find a friend to talk with or do not feel comfortable about talking with a friend then get some counseling. Take advantage of your company's EAP!
Yes overeating is a product of stress and yet soo easy to do when there is so much good food available. Try to limit your portions when eating holiday food. Denying yourself any of the good stuff will only make you more miserable. Try this..take small portions. For every small portion of fattening food you put on your plate, put a small portion of something healthy on it. If you start eating the healthier foods first ( vegetable salad) you are more like to become full and not indulge too much in the foods you Really like!. Eat only until you are full. When you are full just put your plate down! :) You will feel much better about yourself.
During social gatherings concentrate more on socializing than on eating. Drink a glass of water directly before eating. Only try a sample of the more interesting hor de oeurves. Also make healthy choice in regards to drink choices. Sparkling water can substitute for an alcoholic drink.
Shop from Home
To alleviate the big stressors of shopping, take advantage of shopping from home. Nothing beats getting your Christmas shopping done in your fuzzy slippers from home! If you take time to do the research there are some websites that will send you emails about upcoming sales and deliver right to your door. For example I subscribe to the Fisher Price Website to find out the latest deals for my toddler. Start your on line shopping early!
Laughter is the best stress reliever around. Take time to laugh at things in life and I promise you will have a different attitude about things. Nothing to laugh about now? Pop in a funny movie. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation is always a good to make me giggle.
Christmas Vacation- Squirrel
Don't sweat the small stuff
We Always try to make the picture perfect Norman Rockwell kind of holiday for our family. We have an idea in out head what we want the Holidays to look like, but circumstances beyond our control make us fall short of our goals. Say this after me " NO FAMILY GET TOGETHER WILL BE PERFECT!!" Did you say it? Good now believe it!. Those little quirks that happen in our Norman Rockwell painting will be fond memories and a good story for next years gathering!!