The Yuletide season is here, and while most people look forward to celebrating with loved ones and friends, others are just gritting their teeth as they try to survive the holidays. According to a poll conducted last year by the American Psychiatric Association, 41 percent of adults experienced an increase in worrying during the season. Moreover, this year, more than 30 percent of individuals are expecting to feel more stressed than they did in 2021. Family tensions and fights, gift-giving obligations, and financial woes are causing people to feel stress and anxiety during the holidays, making them unable to enjoy what is supposed to be a joyous time. Thankfully, there are ways to rise above these challenges so you can have the happiest of holidays this year.
Don’t Engage in Family Feuds
Stress is a normal part of life– in fact, a little stress can be good for you since it challenges you to think on your feet and makes you better at solving day-to-day problems. However, having to deal with constant, unrelenting stress due to serious problems, such as medical and legal issues, can result in negative health problems since these can put you at risk of health conditions such as diabetes, obesity, and heart disease. This is why getting treatment or legal support is essential if ever you’re struggling with legal or medical problems, since doing so can help to alleviate stress and take some of the weight off your shoulders.
While it may not be as serious as a pre-existing medical condition or a legal matter, having to deal with family drama can also be stressful, especially during the holidays. A recent survey indicates that one in four people are expecting that their family dynamics may affect their mental health this holiday season. If your family environment is too toxic and it causes you to feel anxious or depressed, experts advise that it may be worth it to put some distance between you and them instead of forcing yourself to abide by family traditions.
While it may seem harsh, it’s an effective self-preservation technique that can make you feel a lot better, so you may want to rethink your plans to travel for that family reunion that you aren’t looking forward to. Meanwhile, for those who are still living with family members, the best course of action is not to engage in feuds and avoid getting into heated debates with anyone. If you feel that the tension is building, excuse yourself so you can have a much needed break.
Trim Your Gift Giving List
Having to spend money on gifts for a lot of people, not to mention finding the time to look and shop for presents, can be incredibly stressful for anybody. To lessen your burden, consider trimming your gift giving list. For instance, it may be nice to give your postman, the guy who regularly delivers your packages, and the kids’ teachers a little something for Christmas, but it’s not necessary. And while giving gifts to family members is a must, you may want to have a talk with your relatives to see if you can help each other out regarding this matter. For example, you and your siblings and cousins may agree to skip gifts for the grownups and only get presents for the children. You may also want to agree on a set amount of cash that will be spent on each person, or contribute money for one large gift for a certain relative.
Simple can be Memorable
A lavish Christmas spread may look impressive on your social media posts, but sometimes, even just a few simple dishes that are prepared with love and care will suffice. Instead of splurging on an expensive charcuterie spread and a dessert table, opt for a holiday meal that has one or two appetizers, two main dishes, two sides, and one dessert. Decorate your table to make it look festive, and light some candles to add ambiance. Doing so not only helps to save you money, but it’ll also save you the stress of cooking and prepping too many dishes. You’ll also have more time to bond with your family instead of spending the holidays slaving away at the kitchen.
This year, take care of your mental and emotional wellbeing by dealing with the things that are causing you stress and anxiety. Consider these tips to have a better time during the holidays, and enjoy the season with your loved ones.