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Managing Holiday Stress

The holiday season is officially here and with it comes the anxiety of shopping for the perfect gifts, getting the home ready for entertaining or attending social events. The holidays can also bring sadness - remembering past relationships or missing loved ones who are no longer here.

Here are some ways to avoid feeling overwhelmed during the season.

1) Set boundaries on your time and finances without feeling guilty.

Avoid overspending and over-extending yourself to please others. You can be selective with the events you attend and make plans to get together with friends/family after the holiday rush. Manage the amount of money you spend on gifts to avoid entering the New Year with unnecessary debt.

2) Make time in your calendar for self-care. Schedule a relaxing massage/mani-pedi, treat yourself out to brunch, or take a “mental-health” day to chill in bed with your favorite movie or TV show binge.

3) Incorporate regular exercise and monitor your alcohol intake. Holiday drinks pack in a lot of calories that end up contributing to unwanted weight gain. Don’t wait for the New Year to make healthy choices or exercise resolutions. Make physical activity a priority and practice moderation during the holiday festivities.

4) Get emotional support if you need it. Seasonal depression is very real and compounded by holiday stress which can bring on mood swings and periods of sadness. Share what you are going through with trusted loved ones or seek professional help if you feel overwhelmed.

Remember to give yourself grace and keep things in perspective. The holidays will come and go before you blink so decide what’s really important – the expensive gift on someone’s list or spending meaningful time with loved ones? Prioritize creating lasting memories with friends and family and while you take care of others, don’t forget to be extra good to yourself!

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