7 Ways to Finally Get Ahead of Holiday Stress This Year

By Lindsey Sirera

Be Realistic

Wonder Woman can do it all. Superman can do it all. However you, my friend, are not a superhero (technically). Therefore, you are not expected to do it all.

Now that we’ve got that cleared up, let’s set some healthy expectations. You are not obliged to plan, host, and/or cater every holiday event. You don’t need to attend every holiday party. You do not have to bankrupt yourself shopping for your second cousins and co-workers. What you need to do is remember that holiday season is about JOY. As the end of the year looms, we come together to celebrate and give thanks for the blessings in our lives. So say “thank you” to yourself by not letting your schedule destroy your life.

You wouldn’t want your friends and family burning out over the holidays. So why do it to yourself? Decide early on what you do and don’t want to do this holiday season, and then stick to the plan.

Do Your Shopping Early

Make your shopping list, check it twice, then knock it out, like, now. The best deals usually happen on or before the week of Black Friday (we’ll be having some *major* ones, hint, hint), which means more bang for your buck. And on that note, set a budget. It’s not the gift itself that matters so much as it is the intention behind it, which is spreading a little love to those you care for most. Like we said before, the holidays are about joyand there’s no joy in bankrupting yourself.

Added bonus: when you finish your shopping early, you free up time to savor more enjoyable parts of the season, like baking sugar cookies and sipping hot apple cider by the fire.

Don't Be Afraid to Say No

Say it with us now: NO! No, no, no; a million times no! Now, look around you: did the earth fall off its axis? Nope. Which means that you too can say no in your everyday life without the world ending.

Breath a sigh of relief with me, friends. There’s no shame in saying no. As a matter of fact, saying no when you’re tired, stressed, or simply want to is not selfish. It is a sign of maturity and an act of self-love. By putting your needs and mental wellbeing first, you lay the foundation to be the best version of yourself. And it’s that person who’s going to shine their brightest light into the world, not the version of you who’s run ragged and exhausted.

Pro tip: if you’re still feeling stressed, we’ve got you. This little trio was made to help evaporate your worries.

Create a Wellness Routine (& Stick to It)

The surest course to success during the holidays is to stick to your routine. It’s easy to get sidetracked by all the festivities, but a solid wellness regimen will keep you grounded and feeling like your best self. Make a list of the wellness activities that serve you, be they yoga, listening to music, going for a jog, eating clean, or anything in between. Then, hold yourself accountable.

In addition to taking your daily vitamins and supplements, you may also be interested in exploring CBD oil. This hemp-derived goodness helps deliver balance to the body, and studies suggest that it boosts serotonin levels as well as fights inflammation in the body.

Stay Connected

This is the time of year to reach out to old friends, come together, and celebrate the rich relationships in our lives. In reality, though, many of us tend to feel isolated now more than ever. So make an effort to make an effort. Reach out to your loved ones. Make plans with your friends. Don’t overwhelm yourself, but make sure that you’re still spending quality time with the people who uplift and inspire you.

Take Time for Yourself Every Day

We’re not saying that you need to make every day a spa do (though we certainly wouldn’t be opposed). What we are saying is to take small moments for yourself: watch a reality show under your weighted blanket, save an hour cooking by treating yourself to takeout, indulge in that 15-minute nap. It’s the small acts of self-care that keep us sane this time of year. So make a pact with yourself to do at least three things for yourself a day, no matter how big or small, and write them down. This mini gratitude journal will help keep you focused, feeling good, and most importantly, grateful!

Ask for Help

Asking for help is a sign of strength. You don’t have to drown in stress because you are NOT alone. Whether asking for help means reaching out to a friend, a family member, or a healthcare professional, there is always a path to relief. For many of us, the holidays are burdened by heaping amounts of pressure to be happy and perfect. But no one is always happy, and certainly, no one is perfect. So please, reach out when you’re in need, and always remember that you are worthy, you are strong, and you are loved.

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