A Simple Checklist for Battling Holiday Stress

Ethan Hawley

A deadline at work that seems too short for anyone to meet, an astronomical bill that has arrived unexpectedly, a kids' tantrum that seems endless, and time that doesn't seem to stop. All are reasons, more than enough, to start feeling some stress as we barrel towards the holidays.

Stress Is Natural

Stress is our body's natural response to situations that require us to adjust our behaviors when we are under pressure.

We are creatures of habit by nature, so anything that goes against the norm is enough to stress us out. And stress can manifest itself in the strangest ways. For instance, your heart feels like it jumps out of your chest, your muscles tense up, you start to sweat, and you could swear that, for a moment, the air will completely escape your lungs.

Chances are, you've been there, and the reality is that some people suffer from stress more than others. But it is also true that there are times when stress can mess with everything around us and interfere with our usual routines. Ultimately, normalizing stress and letting it control our lives should not be a solution.

When stress takes over your life, you simply no longer have a healthy life and control over it. In worst-case scenarios, diseases appear to force you to stop and realize that something is not right. Usually, people do not pay attention to the signals, turn a deaf ear to what is going on with their bodies, and continue to stress after stress.

But if this is an everyday problem that we all go through at some point in our lives, how can we best manage stress? For starters, you can use the following stress-fighting mechanisms in your daily life.

Work on Your Self-Esteem

It's one of the first steps to make you feel better daily. It may not seem like a topic related to stress at all, but the reality is that once we have confidence in ourselves, we have the confidence to deal with the world.

Self-esteem can be defined as your belief system and life experience regarding how each person values ​​positivity. Therefore, self-esteem consists of acquired feelings and positive thoughts, leading to a positive attitude, like repeating the mantra:

I AM CAPABLE!

Make Time for Yourself

Come home, turn off your cell or silence your phone notifications and enjoy being with yourself or someone you care about for a few minutes.

It's one of those clichés that all self-help books advise us to follow, but the positive impacts that a few minutes away from your "work" thoughts can do for your mind are priceless.

Many people dedicate themselves to the job so that nothing is missing at home and forget to live the best moments. Those who work a lot don't have time to think about themselves, much less reflect on the direction of their lives. We also know what happens when we are not aware of how we feel. As a result, we get distracted, and negative outside influences lead us without us realizing it.

Sleep Tight

Did you know that robbing hours of sleep each night exacerbates stress and anxiety during the day? There is no lack of studies that prove the benefits of a good night's sleep, but often our daily routine makes us move in such a rush that we end up underestimating what makes us better.

Sleep, especially when it is deep and uninterrupted, has numerous invigorating powers for the body. Thanks to resting, we have the physical and mental capacity to withstand everyday challenges, including stress. On the other hand, a bad night's sleep can be enough to make you more agitated and sensitive to everything around you.

Learn to Breathe — and to Meditate

Meditation is like a natural medication against the stress and tension that we accumulate in our daily lives. It's a simple practice that only takes 15 minutes of mindfulness to make a difference.

If you don't know how to start meditating and breathing, several applications can help with this process. But you can also sit with your back straight, chest out, inhale and exhale deeply, paying attention to the sensations in your body and trying as much as possible to think about the here and now. You will see that it makes all the difference in your daily routine and will help melt away your stress.

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Ethan Hawley is a freelance writer who can condense complicated information into easily digestible articles for consumers and busy executives.

Miami, FL
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