Keep Holiday Stress at BayWeek 4: Keep Your Cool; 10 Tips to use Christmas Day
The big day is nearly here. Are you ready? Are you prepared for the different levels of stress that one day will bring? Would you like to be better prepared? I know it helps me to have a steady idea of what to expect and be prepared for blunders that can happen. Here are some great tips to use the big day:
Tip #1: Organize, organize, organize. Hopefully you have been following my past posts and have made your to-do lists and the timeframe to get things done. The day of Christmas (or whenever you will be getting together with friends or family) can elevate anxiety and stress in the best of us. On this day remember to have a healthy breakfast to boost your brain and mood. Go over your to-do list and make sure you have everything you will need and set a timer to remind you to start the potatoes. If you can cook some of the meal ahead of time that would save you a lot of stress and anxiety. Do you have a dish that can be reheated and still taste amazing? Make that one the day before so you have one less thing to worry about. That way, you will have more time to focus on socializing and catching up then on peeling potatoes or carrots.
Tip #2: Move your body. Follow your normal daily routine. If you usually meditate in the morning, meditate. If you go for a walk or run, do your walk and run. If the weather isn’t allowing you to go outside, find an online class you do in your home for at least 30-minutes to move and groove. Exercise will release endorphins that keep you feeling positive and happy all day long. Morning movement will also promote healthier choices throughout the day. If you aren’t meeting with friends and family until later in the day, take a quick hike or snowshoe and check out a new trail.
Tip #3: Take a hot shower or bath. Take the time to savor your shower or bath. Add some essential oils, Epsom salt, candles and music to make this a calm space giving back to you. This is a great way to loosen any tense shoulders or back muscles that may make you cranky during the day. Calm them early in the day so they aren’t bothering you later in the day.
Tip #4: Splurge and have fun. Put on your favorite holiday movie or music. Turn up the volume and dance and sing or recite all the words from memory. Indulge a little in some mulled wine, chocolate or cookies. Try a new creamer in your coffee or add a peppermint stick to your cocoa.
Tip #5: Don’t forget Me Time. Do a few things on your list and then take a 10-minute mini break. Sit and listen to a guided meditation. Take a power nap. Savor a cup of coffee or tea. Practice some breathwork. Say a prayer or recite a poem. Sing some of your favorite songs. Go to a different room in the house and savor the peace and quiet. It only takes 10-minutes, but it can feel like it gave you an extra hour of motivation.
Tip #6: Get out in nature. The main dish is in, the side dishes are all prepared and the kids are all being entertained. Grab your aunt or cousin and take a walk around the block. Use this time to bond with a family member while getting outside. This will help bring you to the present moment and increase your productivity and creativity as well as love for nature and the person next to you.
Tip #7: Delegate, delegate, delegate. The best way to keep your stress at bay on Christmas Day is to delegate some of the tasks. Start doing potluck dinners where each family member or friend brings a certain dish. This makes the dinner more eclectic and unique. Ask them to bring the recipe with them on note cards to share with everyone at the table. Also delegate help for clean up too. If you know that certain individuals will help with preparing the meal, ask the other’s to help with clean up afterward.
Tip #8: Create quality time. Make it a priority to enjoy conversations with everyone you are surrounded with. Play games, share experiences, ask them what they plan to do in the New Year that they are excited to do. Ask the open-ended questions and really get to know your friends and family on a deeper level.
What is your favorite way to enjoy the day? Create a magical holiday season and keep your stress low and fill your day with more love, more laughter and more moments of bliss.