Five Holiday Wellness Tips
The holiday season is especially difficult for all of us in terms of excess stress and difficulty coping with that stress. While there are many ways you can take your wellness into your own hands, preparing for the holidays is huge, especially as colder weather, less sun and stressful get-togethers are upcoming. Taking care of yourself during the holidays will help you as you inevitably take care of your loved ones. Here are five methods that will help you approach the holidays with an eye toward self-care and wellness.
Sleep’s Your Friend
It’s so easy to neglect sleep as an actual tool in our belt, but we need it to not only reduce stress, but to be healthier, both physically and mentally. It is a mood enhancer – or even a simple mood regulator, since it should put us mentally where we need to be. During the holidays, especially, its recommended to prioritize your sleep over some other activities, as you’ll need it to be ready for potentially stressful get-togethers, like meals and parties.
Plan Around Stress to Make it Through
Families getting together means a lot of potential drama, making the holidays a hotbed of stress. We all dread this in advance, but one mistake many of us make is not to actually plan around that drama, or at least anticipate it. We can more easily navigate the stressors if we plan to not let the worst of it get to us. Have a plan in place for when the stressors hit you, and make it something healthy, like meditating, or simply taking a walk.
See Yourself in the Mirror First
Whether or not your family actually puts together a family newsletter, you’re going to get those updates anyway, and whether or not someone else is putting it in motion, we often compare ourselves to those around us. The healthy approach to this is to not make such comparisons. Often people think that being raised in the same circumstances, or coming from similar backgrounds, means that comparisons are necessary, when in fact the scale of success only makes sense on an individual level.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to always eat well all the time, especially during the holidays, but being aware of what you eat when you do can help you make sure not to do anything in excess. A poor diet can affect how you feel, and the worse you feel (especially if you’re stressed), there’s a chance you’ll be tempted to eat poorly. Stay hydrated and eat well when you can.
Speaking to a professional is always helpful, and in anticipating the worst of the holidays, you should definitely think about speaking with one if you suffer from depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder (or SAD) is also a very real thing, and if it hits you hard, you should speak to someone, as well. You can also look into a lightbox or SAD light therapy lamp – these lamps can help improve your mood.