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Manage your stress during the holidays

By The Health News Team | December 15, 2022
Person shopping at the mall with packages and a cell phone

This holiday season appears to be looking like the most “normal” one we’ve seen in a few years. COVID-19 case numbers are decreasing, people are excited to gather, and retailers look forward to in-person — rather than exclusively online — shoppers.

However, with nonstop family obligations, overcrowded shopping venues and holiday events filling up your calendar, stress levels can elevate this time of year. Emotional meltdowns, feelings of being overwhelmed and fatigue can put a damper on your holiday cheer. 

But with a little planning and a commitment to self-care, it’s possible to get ahead of your seasonal stress. Try these seven stress busters to help you cope and allow you to enjoy the season to its fullest:

  1. Get organized. Write down all you have to do during the holidays. This will help you realize how do-able your tasks are, but you need to have realistic expectations of what you can achieve.

  2. Create a holiday calendar. Mark specific days for your holiday shopping, meal preparation, must-attend events and all of your to-do tasks on one calendar. This will help you prevent rushing to complete all your responsibilities.

  3. Say no at least once. Quiet the noise of errands and parties by allowing yourself to say no to one event — (more if you can). You will feel surprised at how friends and family will understand if you cannot make it to everything.

  4. Start moving. One of the best ways to overcome stress during the holidays is to exercise. Physical activity not only boosts your fitness and energy levels but can also lift your mood. Try wearing a step monitor or fitness tracker to calculate how much activity you are getting.

  5. Get outside. Make sure you get a good dose of vitamin D. Try moving your holiday meals to a local park or take the family for a hike at one of the many trails throughout San Diego.

  6. Eat right. Approach parties with a plan before you arrive. Decide in advance how much you will eat and how many alcoholic beverages you will drink — and always remember to drink responsibly.

  7. Be generous. A wonderful way to stay calm, content and cheerful this time of year is to act generously with your loved ones, co-workers and friends.

By following these valuable tips, you can experience the joy of the holiday season. And your loved ones can enjoy spending time through the holidays with a happier, less-stressed you.

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