As we find ourselves already in full swing of another holiday season, many of us are too busy decorating, planning, and hosting to recognize that though a joyous time of year, the month of December can also trigger unwanted holiday pressure.

Holiday stress, as with any type of emotional anxiety, can cause you to feel “overcome by an intense and unruly emotion that something is too challenging to manage and overcome” (The Talkspace Voice). Perhaps your in-laws are planning an overnight stay or you’re overspending your holiday budget to give everyone on your shopping list the perfect gift. Maybe you’re hosting this year’s annual office party and you’re having difficulty finding time to plan and manage all the intricate details.

No matter what you’re facing this month, your holiday cheer can quickly turn into grief if you’re having trouble concentrating and coping with seasonal stress. 

5 Holiday Stress Relief Tips

At The Calli Institute, we wanted to share good tidings of hope with a few simple holiday management tips for you to try and share with loved ones this year:

  1. Accept the Truth: The moment you stop and realize you’re feeling overwhelmed from holiday stress is the moment you stop fighting your emotions and start finding ways to cope with them (GoodTherapy).

Common Signs of Holiday Stress May Include:

    • Feeling sick or exhausted
    • Feeling unable to complete or focus on tasks
    • Feeling a rise of panic over minor issues
    • Feeling upset or depressed
  1. Set Realistic Goals: It’s not unusual to want to give loved ones the perfect gift or memory this season, but all that holiday pressure can be harmful to your mental health, body, and wallet! Rather than trying to make everything perfect for others, why not sit down and create a list of realistic tasks you can complete each day. Remember not to add chores to your list subconsciously. Stick to your “to-do” list each day and cross out each item after it’s complete. This will allow you to stay on schedule, on budget, and feel a cheery sense of accomplishment each day.
  2. Minimize Your Multitasking Tendencies: This tip comes from PsychCentral, and we think it’s an important one. Multitasking is normally regarded as a valuable quality. At work, you may receive praise for having this skill, but to a certain extent, multitasking also means that rather than focusing on one important task, you’re all over the place trying to finish multiple things simultaneously, which sometimes can affect the quality of your work. The same can be said about planning and prepping for the holidays. Forgo the multitasking mentality and try to focus on completing each task, one at a time.
  3. Ask for Help: Many of us start to feel guilty for asking someone for help. This may arise from wanting to do everything yourself or perhaps you have put so much pressure on your holiday plate that you’re afraid to make more work for others. Delegating tasks is an important skill, and if you can allow yourself to trust others and invite them in to help you, you will experience its immediate benefits. If you’re beginning to feel overwhelmed this holiday, ask a close friend or loved one for help today.
  4. Breathe Deep: Another way to beat holiday stress is to stop and take a nice deep breath of fresh air when you’re beginning to feel overwhelmed. This sounds simple to some, but the act of focused, centered breathing can help relax your muscles, improve your oxygen flow, and allow you to begin to relax.

Wishing You Holiday Stress Relief This Season!

From all of us at The Calli Institute, we wish you a safe, fun, and stress-free holiday season. For more tips and resources on coping with stress and anxiety, visit our blog page. To schedule an appointment at our clinic, contact us today!