Most of us look forward to the holiday season dreaming about good times and good food. We reminisce about holidays past and spend a lot of time planning this year's celebrations imagining everything will be magical.
As the season begins to envelope us, we suddenly remember what else goes with holidays. Travel, shopping, relatives, bills and stress! Luckily, there are many ways to combat stress and balance the scales once again towards all that is good.
We want you to have the best holiday season ever so we are sharing some of our favorite stress busters with you.
Simple Stress Relievers (10 minutes or less)
- Breathe - Take deep, slow breaths preferably with your eyes closed. Fully oxygenating your body will help replenish your energy levels. The time and focus spent on deep breathing allows for slowing down of the body to a more relaxed state.
- Visualize - Sit back, close your eyes and give yourself a few minutes to picture something that brings you joy. Your child's smile, a pile of puppies playing, something funny that happened at work the other day, or a special memory (example pictured above). Keep the image in your mind long enough to feel the smile spread.
- Chew Gum - If you're really pinched for time and your schedule is hectic, chew a stick of gum to release some of the anxiety and stress. Bonus for bubble gum chewing as blowing bubbles adds fun!
- Sing - Stuck in traffic? Overwhelmed with errands? Crank the the car radio and sing like you're in the finals of American Idol! Don't worry what other drivers think. Own your awesome!
Minimum Time Involvement (10-30 minutes)
- Warm Beverage - Take a moment to heat up your favorite warm beverage (or grab one the go if you must) and allow yourself some down time to sip and enjoy. Make sure your beverage of choice does not contain caffeine as we're aiming for calm. Focus on your drink. Pay attention to temperature, taste, smell. Really living in and experiencing the moment fully will leave you feeling calmer and happier.
- Walk - A 20 minute stroll is all you need to set your mind right and help to oxygenate your muscles. Walking outside if able will provide fresh air as well.
- Journal - A short time with a journal and pen can do wonders in relieving stress. You can journal dump (speed write) all of your frustrations and anxieties to release them and start new, or you can choose to focus on things that bring you happiness and feelings of gratitude. A good combo of dumping the bad and ending with gratitude works wonders as well. Your journal, your rules. No matter how you do it, journaling can be very therapeutic.
- Funny Videos - Grab your cell phone and look up funny videos! Laughter is a wonderful stress reliever. Make sure to time yourself so you don't get lost down the black hole that is the internet. Avoid negative videos as they will only add to your stress level.
Extra Stress Relief (One hour or more)
- Bath - draw yourself a nice warm bath. Soak in epsom salts to draw out toxins and relax muscles. Add your favorite essential oil and lose yourself in the luxury.
- Movie - Grab a friend or go solo. Any movie will work as long as it's not something that will cause you to feel upset. Cpmedies are extra stress relievers by providing laughter which reduces stress hormones.
- Diffuse Oil - Using an oil diffuser with a calming oil such as 100% natural Plantlife Calm provides homeopathic calming and relaxation session.
- Sleep - If you are able clear an hour in your schedule at the end of the day, treat yourself to an extra hour of sleep. Sleep is restorative and is especially important when under stress.
Wishing you a safe and happy holiday season!