Coping with Holiday Stress

Visibly stressed out woman holding a wrapped present in one hand, holding a cooked turkey in the other hand. She also has a mop balancing on her and holding up a to-do list with her footAs the holiday season begins, it is critical to take time to support your overall mental wellbeing. For some, the holiday season is a joyful time. But, for others the increase in responsibilities can become overwhelming. The top holiday stressors include:

  • Gift shopping (56%)
  • Crowds and lines (54%)
  • Cleaning (45%)
  • Knowing what to get people (38%)
  • Cooking (36%)

If you find yourself overwhelmed, stop and reevaluate. Ask yourself – is this really necessary? Your own expectations may be the very things that bring on your holiday stress. Try using these tips to help prevent holiday stress:

  • Ask people what they want instead of scouring the Earth to find the “perfect” gift.
  • Don’t over-schedule yourself.
  • Allow enough time to relax and recover after visiting with others.
  • Avoid starving yourself in anticipation of eating at holiday parties. This approach can lead to eating too much of the wrong food.
  • Set priorities and let go of impossible goals.
  • Rest when your body tells you to do so.

While holiday stress may be seasonal, depression can be year-round. If your holiday anxiety seems severe or is interfering with your job or home life, talk to your doctor or to a counselor.

Zeiders is honored to help military members and their families deal more effectively with stress through educational services and counseling for personal stress and operational stress.