The Christmas holidays are all about fun, family and friends, but the whole period can be a tad bit stressful at times. If Christmas feels like it’s getting on top of you this year, take a read though our handy tips on how to stay cool, calm and collected through the festive period.
ExerciseThis may seem like an odd suggestion, but finding time for even fifteen minutes of exercise a day can dramatically boost your mood with stress-fighting hormones. Set aside a small time each day to elevate your heart rate, be it jogging, skipping or a brisk walk around the area, admiring your neighbors' Christmas decorations.
Fail to prepare... Prepare to fail. Truer words have never been spoken, which are particularly appropriate this time of year. Christmas dinner is a juggling act, so plan ahead with pre-prepared meals which can be simply re-heated on the big day. Similarly, gifts can be ordered well in advance, saving you time and stress on the run-up to Christmas.
In the weeks running up to Christmas Day, the house is often stocked full of treats and tasty food. Digging into your sixteenth piece of candy will only make you feel sluggish, so opt for a lighter, healthier diet on the lead up to Christmas. Drink plenty of water, preferably Brita filtered, to flush your system and be ready for a feast on the 25th.
If you feel as though you’ve been running around for weeks, buying presents, visiting relatives and putting up decorations, you owe it to yourself to carve out some "me time". Meditation isn’t as hard or as new age as it sounds. Simply sit comfortably, with crossed legs or in a chair with a straight spine, and spend 10 minutes each day focusing on your breath and nothing more. Thoughts will come, but watch them go as you re-focus your attention on your breathing. Studies have shown a short practice each day can improve your ability to manage stress and foster a feeling of calmness.
When we are seated around the table with our friends and family, ready to eat a delicious meal, it’s important to be thankful for everything you are about to receive. Christmas is often one of the loneliest times of the year for many, so spend a few minutes feeling grateful for everything you have, everything that is right at the moment and focus on all those special people in your life.
Christmas doesn’t need to be stressful, so make a decided effort this year to be level-headed and full of happiness. Merry Christmas!