Feel over the holiday season before it's even begun? Stay ahead of the holiday stress curve to avoid complete holiday burnout.
The holidays seem to approach faster every year. Head to any store in town and you'll see lights, wreaths and happy holiday helpers ready to make your wishes come true. If this scenario brings on frustration, anxiety and fear instead of joyful anticipation you're not alone. This doesn't mean you have to give in to the stress. The holiday season should be a time of fun, family and relaxation. Whenever you're feeling overwhelmed breathe deeply and think of these tips.
Don't skip sleep. You may be busier than every, but your sleep is something you should not cut out of your schedule. It's essential for keeping your stress hormones in check and your weight from creeping up. In fact, lack of sleep can affect your hormones so much that your body may actually store extra fat when things get stressful. If you have trouble settling your mind and unwinding try creating a bedtime ritual. Taking a bath, reading a book, stretch or drink some soothing tea. Naps are not the enemy this time of year either! A power nap during the day can energize you.
Cut yourself a break. You are not a holiday machine and it's okay to cut down on the crazy Martha Stewart Holiday Extravaganza if you're not into that. Memories are created when people are in the moment, not because your homemade table decorations were perfect. Striving for a perfect Norman Rockwell season may have the opposite affect on you and your entire family if it stresses you out.
Learn how to say "no". Saying "no" is an art form during the holidays, but there's no better gift you can give yourself. Your first priority should be taking care of yourself physically and emotionally. If you don't, nothing will get done. Set your priorities and decide which functions you want to attend. Delegating tasks and declining activities are just fine.