10 great ways to beat holiday stress!

2016 has been quite a year, and the impending holidays are stressful for us all. Stress is harmful to our physical and mental health, and we must make taking care of ourselves a priority. Here are some strategies to help you declutter your mind and get you through this hectic season!

  1. Take care to eat well during times of stress. It’s easy to curl up on the couch with a pizza, but it’s not so great for your body. Treat yourself to pizza, fast food, or delivery occasionally, but eat well-balanced meals the majority of the time. Go through your favorite cookbooks or cooking websites, decide what you want to eat the following week, and make your grocery list from that. Deb shows you how to organize your meals here!
  2. Stay hydrated! And that means going easy on the caffeine and alcohol, which are diuretics. Your body will function better when you’re properly hydrated. Signs of dehydration include headache, dry skin, increased thirst, and a dry mouth, and it’s hard to stay organized if you’re not feeling well.

  3. If you’re planning on shopping on Black Friday you’re going to have some stress, but there are tips to help you manage the day!– Check the specials before Black Friday. Many retailers offer terrific deals in the weeks leading up to Black Friday. You’ll also want to do research on the actual products – inexpensive electronics are not a deal if they stop working after a few weeks.– Check the web for leaked Black Friday specials to get the early scoop. Also compare prices using an online comparison tool.– If you’re a loyalty member or Facebook/Pinterest/Twitter follower, be on the lookout for specials just for you!

    – Check the price match and return policies for the stores you plan to patronize. If Aunt Sally buys your child the same expensive gaming unit as you did, you want to be able to return it and know if you’ll get store credit or a refund.

    – Pack a snack and a bottle of water to keep you fueled.

  4. Take a walk. If you have children and want to bring them, by all means do so! Otherwise, get a sitter for as little as 15 minutes so you can get some fresh air and time to yourself. 
  5. Do you have a favorite scent that just makes you feel good? Purchase a candle or essential oil with that scent; just inhaling the smell of an unlit candle and dabs of oil on your pulse points will relax you. 
  6. Have you been meaning to pick up a book or get caught up on your favorite television show but you just don’t feel like it? Well, make yourself. Carve out time for you to engage in some healthy escapism and make yourself get started – once you start, you’ll get into the habit of allowing yourself to enjoy some entertainment. If you don’t have room for a lot of books or movies, visit your local library and use a service such as Netflix! 
  7. Sleep is very important. If you have a hard time sleeping, you can download a mediation or sleep app (these have ambient and nature sounds that can help lull you into dreamland). 
  8. Is your eLife stressing you out? Unplug from email and social media, even if it’s just for a half day. And if there are people on Facebook making your blood pressure rise, unfollow them – you won’t seen their posts and it won’t cause the uproar that unfriending sometimes does. Use your unplugged time you save to take care of errands or tasks, and you’ll feel accomplished! 
  9. Become a pod person. There are podcasts for every interest imaginable, and a great selection of organizing ones! iTunes and Google Play have a bounty of options, and many are free. SMEAD  is a good ones to get you started, and Deb has been a guest several times! 
  10. Last, but not least, declutter! Having a lot of stuff around looks overwhelming, which makes you feel overwhelmed. Start small, for example, if you have magazines because you want those few recipes or that particular article, see if you can find them online and save them to your Pinterest account!