On a scale of 1-10, how is your stress level right now? There are many reasons why stress is at an all-time high: social obligations, gift-giving, traveling, family drama, financial concerns, and the list goes on.
Here are 4 tips to keep your anxiety in check and help you enjoy this holiday season.
1) Set boundaries for yourself.
Think about what is important for you and how you want to feel and experience this holiday season. Then decide how much time and energy you are willing to devote to each thing.
Once your priorities are sorted, you’ll need to get comfortable saying no.
When people ask you to do something that isn’t on your priority list, you can simply say “No,” because “No” is a complete sentence. If that feels too harsh, you can say, “Not right now,” and suggest a different timeline, or you can say, “I can’t do this, but I can do that.”
2) Limit family interactions.
Old patterns and family tensions can easily come up during holiday gatherings. Make sure you have a plan for yourself before you show up to the family gathering/vacation. Allow yourself to take a break or physically step away if things get overwhelming. Stay at a hotel or keep your holiday vacation short. Remember that now is not the time to try to “fix” anyone. And lastly, connect with your inner child and ask them what would help them feel safe and loved.
3) Plan your spending.
Make a budget this holiday season and stick to it. Remember there are other ways to show love and appreciation to your loved ones. You can organize a white elephant or Secret Santa to reduce costs. You can offer an act of service as someone’s gift. Or a simple card with words of appreciation will make a big impact.
4) Remember to breathe.
As you know, this is what I teach. Why? Because it’s the most simple and effective way to go from a state of anxiety and overwhelm to calm. Place one hand on your belly and breath using your diaphragm. Notice the rise and fall of your breath to bring you back to this present moment.