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Chill Out This Holiday Season

Some Dos and Don'ts to avoid stress this holiday season.


DO have a plan.

Plan days for decorating, shopping, wrapping and more. Plan the gifts you are going to give within your set budget. Plan ingredients for your favorite holiday recipes. Having a plan gives you extra time for last minute errands.

DON’T be afraid to say, “no”.

Taking on more than you can handle can lead to unnecessary physical, mental and emotional stress. Pick a few of your holiday season specialties to focus on and have the rest of your family do the same. You can bake and do the shopping, your spouse can put up the tree and lights, and the kids can put together the holiday card. Then, all together, choose to drop the least important activities. Accept that you can’t do it all and that’s okay, because in the end what matters is that you made this holiday season happen together.

DO take time for yourself.

Jump on the treadmill right after work to take a load off before running errands for the holiday season. Wake up a little earlier to enjoy your morning cup of coffee in your favorite spot on days you know are going to be more hectic than others.

DON’T get sick.

Though no one tries to get sick, there are steps you can take to avoid catching a cold during the chaos this season. Wash your hands, only drink from your own drinks, and avoid sneezes and coughs from others. The last thing you need on top off holiday stress is the physical body stress that comes with getting sick.

DO breathe.

Sometimes the holidays get so hectic that we forget a simple solution to stress: using our breath. Try this slow breathing exercise to lower your heart rate and create some mind space. Sit with your back straight with one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest. Breathe in through your nose, and breathe out through your mouth. Repeat until you’ve cleared your mind.

DON’T forget what the holiday season is all about.

Holidays are not about food, presents, or decorations. Rather, the holidays are about spending time with those who we love most — our friends and our families. Be thankful for all that you have instead of focusing on what you don’t have.

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