Stress Reduction During Hectic Holidays

The Holiday Season is in full swing. As wonderful as this time of year is, it can also be incredibly hectic. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), that sentiment is common – 64% of adults with mental illnesses say that the Holiday Season made their conditions “worse.” Overall, 40% say that this time of year gives them social anxiety. The irony of so many of us facing these issues during a time intended for “joy,” “gratitude,” and “giving” shouldn’t escape any of us. But what can we do about it?

We feel stress and anxiety for very specific reasons. It’s our mind telling our body that something isn’t right. When you’re feeling anxious or uneasy during the events of the Holiday Season, try to pause and check in with yourself.

One of the ways we can check in with ourselves is through the practice of mindfulness. When you’re overwhelmed, find any opportunity to stop and ask yourself “What am I feeling right now? What am I thinking about? Where is it all coming from?” There is an art and science to learning to be mindful in a moment of stress and anxiety. It takes practice, but take time to pause, breathe, and focus your thoughts. Then focus on your body and your breathing.

Practicing mindfulness means taking time to look inward to help prevent your stress and anxiety from moving outward. Self-care through mindfulness and daily check-ins can dispel some of the seasonal stress you may experience during the Holidays.

Remember, you are the greatest gift you can give yourself this Holiday Season. Mindfulness might be the key to unlocking that precious gift.