Christmas is a season of joy, happiness and also a huge amount of stress. So how do you avoid anger and stay calm this Christmas?
- Stress levels soar over the Christmas period
- Increased stress can lead to burnout and issues such as headaches and nausea
- There are steps you can take to reduce stress and protect your mental wellbeing
Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. After the 2020 the world has seen, we need it more than ever this year. However, for many people Christmas can also be a hugely stressful experience. Christmas bring financial stresses, hectic shopping trips, navigating guidelines to see selected family members and trying not to burn the dinner.
We are here to help you find ways to navigate these problems and make sure you have a calm and enjoyable Christmas. Firstly though, lets take a look at what exactly stress is.
What is stress?
Stress is simply our bodies reaction to feeling threatened or under pressure.
Stress can manifest in a number of different ways such as elevated blood pressure, headaches, nausea, sleep disturbance and more. Stress is something that everyone feels at times and low-level stress can even be motivational or helpful at times.
Too much stress can affect your mood, your body and even your relationships. When stress starts to feel out of control it can make you feel irritable and anxious and can affect your self-esteem. If you don’t deal with this stress then it can lead to feeling physically and mentally exhausted, known as burnout.
So, how can you avoid elevating your stress levels this holiday season?
Top 5 Tips For A Calm Christmas
The weather outside may be frightful, and the fire will no doubt be delightful, but it is still important you make time to get some fresh air. Even if you have no place to go, take a walk occasionally rather than spending the whole day indoors. Physical exercise can reduce stress and stabilise your mood.
Christmas is about giving but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take time for yourself. Make time to do the things you enjoy, whether that is reading a book, going for a run, or watching a movie.
Make a Plan
Make a to-do list of everything that needs to be done. Don’t let this overwhelm you but instead feel the joy of ticking off each action as it is completed and reward yourself when all your tasks are completed.
Talk To Someone
If you do feel like you are struggling then don’t be afraid to reach out to a friend, family member, colleague or even a helpline. They are there to support you and talk through your worries.
The Christmas period can be hectic so make sure you take some time to stop and centre yourself. Practicing short meditation sessions can reduce anxiety and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
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Fetzner, Mathew G., and Gordon JG Asmundson. “Aerobic exercise reduces symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder: A randomized controlled trial.” Cognitive behaviour therapy 44.4 (2015): 301-313.
Juster, Robert-Paul, Bruce S. McEwen, and Sonia J. Lupien. “Allostatic load biomarkers of chronic stress and impact on health and cognition.” Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews 35.1 (2010): 2-16.