Presents. Parties. Family time. The holiday season is full of potential stressors that can make “the most wonderful time of the year” super taxing. If you’re feeling the pressures of winter and all the obligations that come with it, you’re not alone. Watch the video to see the most common causes of holiday time sadness—and how you can conquer them.
RELATED: 25 Ways to Fight Holiday Stress
Don’t have time to watch? Read the full transcript:
Trigger #1: You’re Trying To Be The Perfect Host
Say "no" more: Holiday shopping, cooking, sending cards, and attending every holiday event can be stressful. Do less and enjoy more.
Plan ahead: Pencil in restorative routines between holiday errands and get-togethers, like reading, napping, or exercising.
Break with old customs: If you’re lonely or grieving, try something new—you’ll avoid old triggers and forge new enjoyable experiences.
Forget perfection: Don’t sweat decorations or gifts. Instead, make a list of simple things that make you happy, and focus on those.
Trigger #2: Family Baggage
Get out of the house: Air out your bickering relatives. Being in public discourages loud voices and bad behavior, and exposure to daylight helps boost feel-good serotonin.
Avoid family conflict: Practice neutral responses, like, “Let’s talk about that another time,” or, “I can see how you would feel that way.”
RELATED: 10 Holiday Headache Triggers
Trigger #3: Loss Of Sleep
Schedule sleep: There is a link between sleep loss and depression, so strive to get your full 8 hours a night.
Prioritize workouts: Exercise can improve mood. Try walking briskly for 35 minutes, 5 times a week.
Don’t binge on food or alcohol: Prepare for holiday meals by eating healthy meals the week prior. Eat one slice of pie, not three, and drink full glasses of water between alcoholic drinks (or skip them altogether).
Get help: Call on friends, support groups, or mental health professionals to help get you through the season.