What would the holiday season be without trees, carols, and seasonal stress?
As joyous as the bells are, years' end requires more effort than all the months preceding it. You’ve got to wrap-up work, buy presents, organise travel, plan entertainment for the kids and prepare an unnatural amount of food.
So to ease your stress levels, we've scouted the internet and brought you the best tips to keep you sane this silly season!
When you want something done, you ask someone busy to do it. Unfortunately, in the mad weeks before Santa drops down your Chimney or jimmy’s into the back room, all of us are busy, and that’s where anxiety and stress can begin. You can alleviate this by:
- Being reasonable with your schedule! You’re not Santa, needing to deliver presents to every child on Earth at the same time, so make sure you’re setting yourself time to relax and put your feet up.
- Figure out your priorities and stick to those. When the important things are taken care of, everything else will usually come together.
- Rushing isn’t exercise! Make sure you’re not neglecting your health. Try to keep your regular fitness routine, as it’s a great way to burn off that excess stress.
- Budget, budget, budget! As much as you might love to throw a party that would make Beyonce blush, cutting a few corners and saving yourself some dollars is going to be better for you later down the line.
- Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’ – realising you have enough on your plate (literally and metaphorically) is not something to be ashamed of.
- Treat yourself like you’d treat a friend. You don’t expect perfection, and you want the best for them.
Reaching out to others
So you’ve got your calendar set up, presents crisply wrapped beneath a tree decorated with twinkling finery, and enough food in the fridge to satiate the oncoming hoard.
Life is good. But chances are you’ll know someone who’s not doing so well this Christmas, and it might be nice to reach out to them to let them know they’re being thought of during the special season.
Signs to look out for
Maybe you know someone who’s been having an awful time at work in the last week, or month, or year. You might have a friend or acquaintance who has a particularly nasty divorce or break-up this year, and they’ll be missing the significance of their other as the solstice draws close. There are as many negative circumstances as there are verses in Silent Night, and while some of them are obvious, others might not be.
What to do
Unless the elves have granted you a single Christmas wish, you’re not going to make anyone’s problems magically disappear. But you can
- Send a message – it doesn’t have to be long, or sappy, just a reminder that they’re important in your life, and that you’re thinking of them
- Invite them over – no-one likes being alone on Christmas, so if you have an extra seat, consider pulling it out for them!
- Ask for their help – people are usually social creatures who feel a sense of reward and purpose when they’re needed. Giving someone in need a task to keep them occupied, a goal that can be fulfilled, might give their Christmas spirit a little lift.
Relax. Don’t force yourself to enjoy Christmas. Remember, it’s your time to feel however you want to feel. It’s perfectly fine to want some alone time, or to focus strictly on self-care. So relax, reflect, and try to avoid unnecessary stress.
Oh and avoid politics and religion over dinner. Of course.
In 2017 should you or a family member require assistance with mental health, the CBHS Health & Wellness Team are here to help.
To learn more about our Mental Health Program, email firstname.lastname@example.org .au or contact the team directly on 02 9685 7567.