‘Tis the season of Goodwill. Managing Christmas Stress.

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‘Tis the Season for Goodwill. Or is it?

Yesterday I popped out to collect some parcels and do a bit of shopping and I was struck by just how miserable and stressed some people were. ‘Tis the season of goodwill – or so the plethora of Christmas films on the television would have you believe. So why the long faces and the general feeling of stress and anxiety?

We put a tremendous amount of pressure on ourselves to make everything perfect – the perfect present, the perfect meal, the perfect table, the perfect decorations… In reality who actually notices?

So here are some ideas to help you get through the next few weeks and for managing Christmas stress:

1.  Choose your attitude. Every day you have a choice about how you feel. Some people believe that others influence our attitude and behaviours – but the reality is that it is our choice as to whether we wish to be influenced by others. So make a choice to be happy and calm.

2.  Following on from that – be kind to others. We are all feeling the strain so why not take a moment or two out to smile at others and exchange a few kind words or a joke with people. It will make both you and them feel better.

3.  Quiten your inner perfectionist! Really! Most people won’t notice that the bows don’t match the wrapping paper or that you have forgotten the bread sauce. They will just be happy and grateful that they have a nice meal and lovely presents.

4.  Eat thoughtfully. We all expect this to be the season of gluttony and excess – but it doesn’t have to be. Savour each mouthful that you eat, enjoy the flavours and textures, really think about what you are eating – this will enable you to eat less and to really enjoy what you are eating rather than just devouring for the sake of it.

5.  Go for a walk. We will all spend a lot of time in the house with family over Christmas. Get out in the fresh air for a short time each day to get some air in your lungs and blow away the sleepy feeling from all of that food and drink.

6.  Drink water. I’m not saying replace all of the alcohol! But make sure that you are treating your kidneys and liver as well as your stomach. Aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water each day and a glass of water between each glass of something else!

7.  Try to be mindful. This great article from Psychology Today gives some great tips for being mindful over Christmas – a great way to quieten the mind and relax you.

8.  Take some time out for yourself. Take a candle lit bath, book a massage, take some time out from the family for yourself to keep yourself sane!

So to all of my clients – old, present and to come – have a very Happy, relaxing and stress free Christmas!

 

 

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