Does the hustle and bustle of the Holiday Season Stress you out? Does the thought of family gatherings overwhelm you causing you to over-indulge in things you wouldn't normally do like, food and alcohol?
You're not alone!
The Holiday Season causes stress and anxiety for people all over the globe. This is a worldwide problem. For some people, merely the thought of gathering with their extended family or in-laws causes debilitating symptoms while others find the financial burden the holiday season places on them is enough to cause depression. There are many reasons why an individual could find themselves depressed, stressed, anxiety-stricken or just overwhelmed during the holidays. Whatever the reason, most of us find our safe zone through food. Whether it be eating too much, too little or simply by eating the wrong foods. Often times we find ourselves in the days leading up to the “big day” eating fast food, sweet/salty foods and engaging in more alcoholic beverages then we normally would. Only to find that on the “big day” our stress, anxiety and depression is off the wall and we end up binge- and over-eating. You wonder: "will the whirlwind of thoughts, feelings and actions ever slowdown?", this vicious cycle you find yourself in year after year.
But what if there was a way to change your perspective of the Holiday Season so that it eliminates the stress and anxiety associated with this time of year. Here are some simple, but effective Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) help tools to keep you positive during the Holiday Season.
1. Be Kind to yourself. Schedule time to be happy and enjoy the things that make you feel good. This could be reading a good book, listening to music or engaging with your children.
2. Exercise & Meditation. It's a well known fact that exercise and meditation helps combat the negative self talk we often experience. When you feel stressed or panicked, stop and take 2 mins to breathe before resuming your activity. Do this as often as you need.
3. Eat a balanced diet. Fuel your body with nutrient-dense foods. Eating healthy foods helps to keep your brain functioning optimally. This helps you to think clearly allowing you to problem solve better.
4. Choose to be happy. Give yourself permission to be happy. Just because someone else is making you feel crummy, rise above with positive affirmation and create your happiness. Surround yourself with people whom make you feel good.
5. Identify your triggers, feelings and behaviours. By identifying your triggers ahead of time, you can find new positive ways to handle the situation, thus making you feel happier.
6. If you feel the holidays are too much to deal with and these tips are not working, consider working with a therapist. Together we can get you feeling in tip top shape and prepared for the Holiday Season.
For self-help tools, click on the "tools" on the menu!
Your Solymar Health Group Team