Stress, particularly how to manage it, has become a major topic of discussion over the last few years. The effect that stress can have on our bodies, our moods, and our behaviors can range from a headache or upset stomach to anger and sleep issues. Without regulating the stress we encounter, we increase our risk of certain health conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and more. The good news, however, is that there are many ways we can handle the way stress makes us feel and act.
Strategies for keeping stress under control include making time for activities and hobbies that bring you joy, practicing mindfulness techniques such as breathing exercises or yoga. In addition to these, maintaining regular physical exercise is beneficial in keeping stress at bay. A healthy routine can be key as well. This includes getting sufficient sleep during the night, staying hydrated throughout the day, and fueling your body with nutritious food to stay energized. This is especially important as we celebrate the holiday season.
During the holiday season we might feel stress from managing finances while buying gifts for others, trying to have control or do everything ourselves for family gatherings, or not feeling like celebrating due to the loss of a loved one. You might try asking each guest to bring a dish to share for a dinner gathering or decide not to attend a certain event because you feel overloaded and need rest. During this time, you can practice stress management techniques in order for YOU to enjoy the holiday season, too!