8 Ways to Overcome Holiday Pressures


A time for joy, celebration, and…anxiety? As wonderful as the holiday season can be, it can also bring undeniable pressures with it. With the numerous parties to host and attend, frantic shopping trips to find those perfect gifts, and unhealthy binging sessions, it’s no wonder that the rates of depression and stress increase around this time of year.

Breaking patterns and changing our expectations can help with some of the associated challenges of the holiday season. The suggestions below may just help in bringing back the magic of the season.

Discover the freedom of saying no

As hard as it is to decline an invitation or reject a task, saying no can be liberating. Spreading yourself too thin will just leave you feeling exhausted, both emotionally and physically.

Accept familial differences

Setting aside our differences for the greater purposes of connecting with loved ones can be a challenge we face year-after-year. Well, practice makes perfect! This year, expect the behaviours which irritate you and make peace with them…at least for the holidays.

Stick to a reasonable budget

What ever happened to the old adage “it’s the thought that counts?” If overspending leaves you financially drained during this season of giving, try agreeing to a budget amongst your family and friends that is reasonable. After all, they may very well be in the same boat as you.

Don’t expect perfection

A simple concept that we refuse to accept. Overexerting yourself may create a perfect illusion of holiday festivities while increasing your stress level. The spirit of joy and togetherness is lost and with it, a perfect opportunity to celebrate what really matters; quality time with our loved ones.

Exercise and eat well

We tend to throw our good eating habits and exercise routines out the window during the holidays. Granted, the goodies are too delicious to ignore, but moderation goes a long way. Take a stroll before and after dinner with the family, or eat some healthy snacks in between the sugary treats. These small positive adjustments to your holiday habits can also help elevate the grumpy moods inflicted by a bad diet.

Make time for you

In the spirit of giving to others, we forget to give to ourselves. Take 15 minutes each day to enjoy relaxing music, take a bath, or go for a mind-clearing walk. If you’re happier, you are better company to others.

Join community activities

If you are far from family or friends or find yourself alone, seek out events and activities in your local community.

Make your own traditions

This time of year is rich with old traditions and for some, this can lead to frustration if they don’t fit into those traditions. It can be exciting and gratifying to create your own customs and traditions that are more suited to your background, family size and financial situation. Have fun with it!

Taking a step back from what is expected of us, especially during the holiday season, can help us gain some insights on how to reasonably celebrate what should be a happy and heart-warming time of year.

Dilawri Foundation