There is so much to love about the holiday season, from quality time with loved ones to festive events and traditions scattered throughout December.
However, this wonderful time can also be stressful and mentally taxing for many.
According to the American Psychological Association, roughly two in five American adults say their stress increases during the holiday season. Additionally, 43% say that the stress of the holidays interferes with their ability to enjoy and celebrate them.
One of the best things you can do is proactively begin managing your holiday stress, starting today.
In this blog post, we want to share some wellness tips for the holiday season. Here are five tips to reduce stress and help you beat the end-of-year bustle.
1) Use Supplements for Stress
An excellent way to plan ahead is to research supplements that will help keep you healthy and calm during the holiday season (and winter months in general).
For example, many people stock up on supplements like Valerian root to help with nerves or zinc to keep them from getting sick at gatherings.
Not getting enough sleep during the holidays? That can certainly take a toll on your mental health. Many of our customers take a melatonin supplement before getting in bed to help them fall and stay asleep throughout the night.
We’re not saying that supplements for stress relief can cure or prevent symptoms altogether. However, by arming yourself with the right products, you can potentially help your body stay on top of issues like nerves, stress, and illness.
- NOTE: You should always consult a healthcare professional or pharmacist before starting a new supplement, especially if you are on other medications.
For further questions, feel free to drop by any Klingensmith’s location.
2) Take Time to Unplug & Relax
The holiday season is all about connecting with others, and as a result, most of us are pretty busy visiting family and getting together with old friends.
That’s great – but an overly full calendar can create stress and lead to exhaustion. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by family dynamics, financial concerns, or other factors associated with staying busy, take a deep breath and unplug.
Focus on spending time doing something that helps you relax, alone or with a trusted family member. Try to put aside your to-do list for a bit and prioritize ways to practice self-care. Take a long bath, read a book, play a game, or do something else that brings you joy.
Holiday stress builds up and compacts like a snowball. The more you stay on top of it and take time to decompress, the less your anxiety will compound over the season.
3) Try Aromatherapy Oils
We have substantial research supporting the belief that aromatherapy (breathing in essential oils) can help with anxiety symptoms, sleep quality, and overall mood.
When you start to feel stressed during the holidays, consider using an aromatherapy diffuser or applying high-quality essential oils to your skin. There are many different oils you can try, including…
Lavender for its calming properties
Chamomile for its relaxing effects
Bergamont for its mood-lifting capabilities
Frankincense for grounding and centering
Rosemary for help with concentration and focus
Of course, mental health is a vast and complicated subject, and no aromatherapy essential oil is going to “fix” anything. However, we’ve seen plenty of aromatherapy benefits, especially when it comes to anxiety and stress relief.
Visit your local Klingensmith’s to browse our variety of essential oils, as well as aromatherapy products such as diffusers, spa pillows, and more. P.S. These products also make excellent Secret Santa Christmas gifts for stressed coworkers or family members!
4) Practice Breathing Exercises for Stress
One of the most critical healthy habits you can form is learning how to properly breathe your way through stress-inducing activities. We know that sounds silly, but trust us: deep breathing techniques for stress relief can have incredible benefits.
As Harvard Health has stated, breath control as a relaxation technique can help quell errant stress responses. When your body tenses up and prepares to fight or flee a stressful situation, deep breaths can significantly slow your heartbeat and lower or stabilize your blood pressure.
During December, if you tend to feel anxious or tense, schedule time for purposeful breathing and a little holiday stress relief.
Find a quiet, comfortable place to sit or lie down. Take a few normal breaths, then breathe in slowly through your nose, allowing your chest and lower bell to rise. Fill your lungs and abdomen, then exhale as slowly as you can.
Although breathing for stress relief can help at random intervals, it’s the most effective when practiced regularly. Try to create a holiday routine and practice at least once or twice a day throughout the season.
5) Sometimes, Simply Say No
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by many things during the holidays – spending money on gift-giving, attending events with friends, community volunteering, keeping up with family traditions… The list goes on!
That’s why we want to remind you that it’s okay to say no to things that bring you more stress or that don’t give you joy.
Your mental health should always be a top priority, and as much as you don’t want to feel left out, it’s good to set realistic expectations about how much you can do. If you know you’re stretching yourself too thin across family gatherings and holiday events, take a step back to rest.
Prioritize the most important events with your loved ones and focus on balancing your schedule in a way that makes you feel calm and comfortable. Pace yourself, mentally and physically, to get through the next month while still having fun.
If you don’t give yourself a break now and then, you risk burning yourself out before the holiday season comes to a close.
Get Help Staying Healthy During the Holidays
It might be the most wonderful time of the year, but that doesn’t mean we can lose sight of what really matters during the holidays: our health and happiness.
By cultivating healthy habits now, you can help yourself prepare for holiday stress surrounding family conflict, parties with friends, spending money, and other concerns.
Hopefully, these tips to reduce stress during the holidays will help you get started and truly enjoy the season.
If you feel hopeless or that you may be dealing with a mental illness like anxiety, depression, or seasonal affective disorder, talk to a mental health professional or message a crisis text line.
You deserve to celebrate the holiday season, and a professional will help you find tools to manage your stress.
At Klingensmith’s Drug Stores, we’re committed to your well-being in every aspect, including your mental health. We’re here to help you face holiday gatherings head-on with the right medications, supplies, and knowledge.
In the meantime, happy holidays from the entire Klingensmith’s family!