Holiday Stress and Ways to Conquer It
The Christmas Holidays are upon us and with them the pressure to create “picture perfect” memories with family and friends. There are so many extra things to be done: cleaning, shopping, wrapping, decorating, baking, entertaining, dealing with family schedules, creating and observing traditions with our children, making travel plans, and staying within a reasonable budget. Rather than the peace and joy that we hope for, we find ourselves frustrated and depressed.
At the ADAMH Board we have compiled a few suggestions to help you conquer some of the stresses of this season:
- Be realistic about your expectations for the holidays. How important is it that everything be perfect? Be flexible; adapt rituals and traditions to fit your family’s circumstances.
- Don’t pressure yourself about buying gifts your budget cannot afford.
- Plan ahead! Make lists and schedule times for specific activities.
- Learn to say “no.” Saying “yes“ to every invitation can leave you feeling tired and resentful.
- Forget about giving the perfect gift. There is no shame in asking people what they want.
- Make time for yourself; eat right, exercise, get enough sleep.
- If you are lonely at Christmas, reach out to others. Volunteering is a great way to feel connected.
For some the holidays can intensify feelings of loneliness, depression, and anger. Some may even experience these feelings beyond the normal holiday season. If this should happen to you, do not hesitate to seek the help of a professional counselor. The ADAMH board can help connect you with community agencies that have appropriate resources for managing these feelings.
Have a joyous Holiday Season! With appropriate planning and creativity, you can experience calm and peace at Christmas.