The holidays are upon us! No matter if you celebrate Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Christmas or your own Winter Holiday like Festivus, we know that life gets hectic. Truthfully, it’s often fun and sometimes it can also be a stressful time for all of us. We asked the Therapists at Explore What’s Next for simple Tips For The Holidays.
Tips For The Holidays
The holidays can be a stressful time for people, especially for those who are struggling with depression or anxiety. Self-care is going to be key. Get creative and personalize your self-care! It could mean spending less on gifts for the family and using the savings to get yourself something special. You could plan on leaving the holiday party early to prioritize getting a good night’s sleep. Give yourself permission to say no to activities and parties that would cause more stress than enjoyment.
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Even though it is important, finding time for self care during the busy holiday season is challenging! I love to find small ways to decompress that only take a few seconds! Using essential oils is my favorite approach. Individual oils like lavender, lemon, peppermint, bergamot, frankincense and orange are fantastic, or you can whip up a simple blend. My favorite holiday stress blend includes: 3 drops lavender, 2 drops of peppermint, and 2 drops of lemon.
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Try to be present instead of worrying about how things “should” be. Some of us dread the holidays because it’s a time where relatives ask us how school/work is going, how our kids are doing if we’ve kept up with the exercise regime we boasted about last year, and what our future plans are. We might also feel like we “should” have the “perfect” holidays—wonderfully seasoned food served on beautiful platters on flawlessly created and Pinterest-esque tables. That is, after all, what we probably picture in our heads when we think of the holidays and what we see on social media.
Albert Ellis, a famous psychologist, is known for saying, that we “should” all over ourselves. There is so much pressure around the holidays and it would be great if we could replace “should” with “could. We would probably be better off if we focused on the present, were mindful of our surroundings, and let go of the cultural pressures of how things “should” be.
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Create you’re own personal or family traditions. Holidays can be stressful with meeting everyone else’s needs and traditions. Start something new that you or you and your family enjoy so you know you have something YOU will look forward to!
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Keep it simple. Do you need a glass of water? A hot shower? A quick nap? It’s ok to slow down and take a short break, especially during the busiest times during the holidays.
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