The demands on time, money and relationships throughout the holiday season can leave one overcome with anxiety or feelings of being overwhelmed. Below are a few tips to help maintain balance through the holiday season.
- Make a list of priorities. Before you feel steamrolled by the demands of others (real or perceived demands), make a list of what is most important to you to accomplish. Set aside time in your calendar for making these things happen. And if these plans involve others, communicate this to them in advance so they can plan too.
- It’s okay to say “no.” Give yourself permission to say no, to decline attending an event or participating in something that you find to not fit among your priorities. If you have no “no,” your “yes” has little meaning. Say yes to the things that matter to you and politely pass on opportunities that do not align.
- Prioritize adequate rest. Mental clarity and emotional stability are greatly impacted by adequate rest. It is easy to try to stay up late getting surprises in place for others, but be mindful of cutting into your rest time. Lack of sleep can negatively impact your interactions with those that matter most to you, and hurt feelings among family and friends during the holidays is not fun for anyone.
- Prioritize 20-30 minutes of exercise and exposure to the sun daily. With the busyness of holiday parties and shopping, it is easy to get out of a regular pattern of prioritizing exercise. Regular, daily exercise balances mood and energy levels. Additionally, many are affected by Seasonal Affected Disorder (SAD) and daily exposure to the sun helps immensely.
- Seek to give more than you seek to receive. While society’s marketing efforts actively seek to create feelings of a “need” for a particular item, keep in mind that giving is far more rewarding than receiving. Give in ways that matter to those you feel truly need it. Perhaps this means getting gifts for a person at a nursing home, a child or family in need, or even a pet at the animal shelter. Think about what things break your heart, and seek out ways that use your skills and giftedness to make a difference in that area.