22 Ways to Relieve Stress During the Holidays

22 Ways To Relieve Holiday Stress Plus Suggestions From the Orthopaedic Specialists Team

Though the holidays are supposed to be a time for giving, family and hope, sometimes the stress of giving and receiving puts people in a “bah humbug” type of mood! The added pressure of finding the perfect gift has left people fighting in shopping malls. The pressure of end-of-the-semester exams creates more stress for students and parents. An abundance of sugary treats makes it easier to fill up on food that zap energy and sabotage nutrition plans. And the added time crunch from work and family gatherings and obligations makes it more difficult to carve out time for stress-relieving activities like exercise.

Start enjoying the holiday season by cutting back on the stressors that cause negative emotions and frustration. If this time brings about stress because of family, gift giving or other reasons, there are some different ways you can relieve stress over the holidays so you can start enjoying this time of year again, including some suggestions from the team at Orthopaedic Specialists.22 Ways to Relieve Holiday Stress

  1. Find Time For Yourself: Whether you’re a working mom, or a single guy, make sure that you allow time for yourself over this holiday season. Use this holiday season to do some self-reflection and introspection. This will help you handle your stress and worries instead of ignoring or pushing them away.
  2. Make Lists: Create daily checklists that pertain to different areas of your life. This means that your lists could pertain to work, home or shopping lists. Getting organized is a great way to manage stress.
  3. Enjoy the Little Things: Think back to the holidays when you were a child. Remembering these memories will bring back your holiday spirit and help you relax as well. Try doing simple tasks that always put a smile on your face.
  4. Pick Up a New Workout Routine: Try rock climbing, yoga or kickboxing. Let out your stress by getting active. This will help you generate endorphins while making you feel better about your body!
  5. Make Cookies: There are so many recipes out there to explore and they don’t all have to be loaded with sugar. This activity will give you something fun to do with your hands while reducing your stress levels at the same time. You can also put a smile on someone else’s face when you share what you make.
  6. Listen to Holiday Music: Put on your favorite tunes and start singing along! It’s as simple and easy as that! Listening to music will help you loosen up and get with that holiday spirit.
  7. Volunteer: There is no better way to give this holiday season other than volunteering! Check out the local shelter or children’s home near you to see what volunteer opportunities and needs they may have. This selfless act could turn into a new tradition for you and will guarantee to put you in a better mood.
  8. Get a Picture With Santa: You’re never too old to believe in Santa! Bring your family or pet with you to stop by and see Santa this season.
  9. Make Your Own Presents: This craft activity will help keep you busy and it will put you in the giving spirit! There’s nothing better than making homemade, personalized gifts for your friends and family this season.
  10. Make Amends: Before you attend one of your dreaded family holiday parties, try and make amends with your family, or at least put off your feelings till after the holidays. This time of the year should be spent with loved ones, despite any issues that may be present.
  11. Write in a Journal: Using a journal to write down your feelings will help get your thoughts and opinions out there without having to complain to someone. This is a therapeutic activity that will help address the real issues at hand during this time of the year.
  12. Get Outside: A little vitamin D could do you some good during the holiday season! Many people experience Seasonal Affective Disorder during winter months. Getting outside and exercising could be the best way you can reduce your stress levels!
  13. Take a Natural Sleep Aid: For some, trying to fall asleep during the holidays is the most difficult. While lying in bed there are so many thoughts and things running through your mind. Make it easier to fall asleep by taking a natural sleep aid like melatonin. This will help you catch up on sleep and feel better in the morning.
  14. Do Less: Don’t bite off more than you can chew this time of the year. Make this holiday less stressful by avoiding too many tasks all at once. Try and enjoy this time of the year by doing less.
  15. Try Essential Oils: Jennifer Yocum explains: “My favorite simple way to de-stress is a hot bath, by candlelight, with Epsom salt and an essential oil. Use your favorite scent for the oil and candle. I prefer lavender.” What a great suggestion!
  16. Get a Massage: This is a great idea provided by Marti Spencer at Orthopaedic Specialists.
  17. Take a Nap: Sometimes a little extra rest during the day or an extra hour at night can make all the difference during times of stress.
  18. Take a Bath: In the words of our very own Rhonda Magruder – “Enjoy a HOT bubble bath and then go to bed super early.”
  19. Read a Good Book: As described by Lindsay Rhodus: “Run hot water for the bathtub and get in with a good book. This relieves tension, aching muscles and stress!”
  20. Go for a Run: As described by Dorothy Cochran: “My simple way to de-stress is to go for a 30 minute run. I grab my iPod and running shoes and in about 30 minutes I have forgotten whatever it was that was bothering me. Even my husband knows to send me on a run if I’m looking a little frazzled. LOL!”
  21. Enjoy TV Night: “Find a good movie on TV, cuddle up with a blanket on the couch, and enjoy a glass of wine or your favorite beverage.” – Angel McDowell
  22. Relax: Easier said than done, however, after completing any or all of these holiday stress reliever activities you should truly try to relax. Take your time this holiday season and enjoy it for all of the right reasons!

We know the holiday season can be the most stressful part of anyone’s year. Try to use this special time to relax, enjoy being friends and family, take stock in all that you are grateful for in your life, while also growing closer to yourself. The holidays don’t have to be a high stress time. In many ways it’s all about your mindset and the little things you do to make life more enjoyable.