‘Tis the Season for Stress

We’re all subjected to the same expectations of urgency and cheer during The Season, whether we celebrate the holidays or not. Both can be stressful if you’re not in the flow. So, what can you do to counterbalance the strain?

Here are 15 ways that can help:

Breathe – Take a few long breaths throughout the day. Deep breathing relaxes the body and mind.

Nap – Lie down for 15 minutes to reenergize. Some workplaces have nap rooms. Schools are hopping on board, too.

Zone out – Stand next to a window and stare without focusing on anything…give your mind a break.

Divide and conquer – Your roommate/partner grocery shops while you clean.

Walk – Hit three birds with one stone. You get natural light, get out in nature and get exercise, all of which boost mood.

Stretch – Stretching relaxes the body and can alleviate stress from tense, tired muscles.

Eat well – Eat foods that make your body feel good, whole foods.

Indulge – After you wolf down a bunch of kale, enjoy a little of your favorite holiday treat; savor each bite.

Meditate – Sit quietly at home before work or close your eyes somewhere quiet at work during lunch. Meditation is both energizing and calming.

Reflect – Write a list of your favorite things about this time of year. Gratitude is good for you mentally, emotionally, physically and socially.

Sleep – Go to bed when you feel tired. If you can’t fall asleep, pop in a meditation or relaxation CD.

Listen to music – Spend a few minutes before work, at lunch and after dinner playing tunes that inspire or relax you.

Pet your dog (or lizard) – Petting Sparky reduces stress.

Gab and wrap – Have tea with friends while wrapping gifts. Your social health is important, too.

Hydrate – Sparkling or still, doesn’t matter—drink water throughout the day.

Make self care a priority this season and watch as the hubbub fades into a faint hum.

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