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A Word about Holidays

A Word about Holidays

Long-time readers of these articles may recognize the sentiments contained in today’s offering.  Yes, it’s a repeat, but holiday stress is also repetitive.  So, I hope you will find something beneficial and “share-worthy!”

Holidays mean different things to different people.  For many, this is a time of great happiness, joy, family and friends.

For others, however, holidays mean anxiety and stress. It’s true. The stress levels typically increase exponentially as the holidays come nearer and nearer.

I want to share with you just a few, brief, “common sense” reminders about dealing with holiday stress:

1.  Slow down

Take time to think about what is really going on–the significance of the season.

2.  Be realistic in the financial arena.

Gifts are a form of communication. Consider what you are saying by means of your gift.

The most meaningful gifts are not necessarily the most expensive.

3. Pay attention to your health.

Exercise.  Monitor what you eat and drink.   Focus on moderation.

Get enough rest, relaxation.

4.  Plan ahead.

Avoid overloading your schedule,  Decide to say “no” to some of what is expected of you.

Set and stick to you own realistic limits.  Don’t commit to more than you can handle.  If traveling, allow yourself plenty of time.

5.  Make your own plans.

Do not defer all your time to others.  Make plans to do something you enjoy doing.  Make plans to be with people you enjoy being with.  Say “no” if you don’t want to do something.

6.  Allow yourself to feel sadness and grief when appropriate.

Say a special prayer or memorial for a loved one, make a keepsake ornament, reminisce and don’t deny the grief or pain you may experience.

7.  Don’t use the holidays for family therapy.

This is not a good time to work on your spouse’s attitude or your mother-in-law’s sharp tongue.

People are probably not going to change much–especially during the holidays.  Courtesy, kindness and patience are usually a very important priorities.

8.  Consider volunteering some of your time to help others.

Take clothes to a homeless shelter.  Serve food to the needy.  Provide gifts to a child.

9.  If your “holiday blues” don’t lift after a few weeks, seek help.

Feelings of depression and anxiety that are moderate to severe and long lasting may be signs of a problem that should be discussed with you physician or counselor.

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