Article by Graham Kempster
Top 7 Ways to Have a Stress Free Christmas
Christmas is upon us yet again. Is it me or is it getting earlier? One known fact is that we all anticipate the stress Christmas day and the preparations can bring. I have put together a few facts and ways to avoid Christmas stress so that you have a stress free Christmas.
One in five of us gets stressed during the festive season, according to a survey by the mental health charity Mind.
Buy presents only for the children.Set a limit on the cost of presents.Decide how much you can afford to spend on your children and stick to it. That way they’ll choose something they really want and you won’t get into debt.
Buying presents is one of the most stressful parts of Christmas. Make a list of all the gifts you wish to buy before you go shopping.Don’t wait until the last minute such as Christmas Eve to buy your gifts this will just increase your stress.
3. PARTIES’Not everyone enjoys parties, especially if they’re a bit shy. We can all do things to boost our confidence:If your worried about your conversation skills just be a good listener this will earn you brownie points because people just love talking about themselves.If you do wish to engage in a conversation, ask open questions such as what someone is doing for Christmas or how their job’s going. Hairdressers do this all the time, Where are you going ao your holidays this year?Don’t rely on alcohol to calm your nerves – it can make you more stressed.
4. FOOD and DRINK
Christmas often means eating a diet high in salt, sugar and stimulants, like alcohol and caffeine, which can make feelings of stress worse. But if you watch your diet, you’ll feel less anxious and have more energy.Not only is alcohol full of calories but it also increases stress. Have a glass of water between every alcoholic drink to prevent dehydration and a hangover the next day.Carbonated mixers, such as tonic, increase absorption of alcohol so choose fruit juice instead.Drink less caffeine – it adds to stress and drains your energy levels in the long term. Cut down on smoking which increases stress too. Antioxidants can help to relieve the effects of stress. Good sources are red fruit and vegetables, like tomatoes, peppers, grapes and cherries, and also festive treats like Satsuma’s and nuts. A little chocolate is OK, as it contains antioxidants, but choose a good-quality brand that is 70 per cent cocoa and has less sugar.
Relaxation is important in avoiding Christmas stress. Before you go to bed, drinking camomile tea may aid relaxation.Exercise is a great stress reliever. Take a walk every day rather than staying indoors throughout Christmas.Laughter is highly recommended to relieve stress. Get yourself to a pantomime, I’m sure you find some kids to take with you.If you really want to get away from it all, go abroad during Christmas? I have done this a few times and although the first I thought I would miss Christmas day, not a chance I loved it. Look on the internet you can get some great deals especially if your flexible where you go.
6. CHRISTMAS DAY
Help each other out, rather than let one person do everything, and agree on what you all want to do. Get other people to help, laying the table pouring people’s drinks.Planning is the best policy. Write a list of what you have to do, such as when to start cooking, then stick to it.Avoid tensions by reaching an agreement on what the family wants to do rather than let one person have their way.
7. NostalgiaChristmas is the time when all those things you’ve been keeping covered up over the year come back at you, such as the loss of a loved one. It’s a nostalgic time, try not to take things too seriously. If a loved one is not present remember the good times and maybe toast them at the dinner table. Remember life is for the living and we are all blessed by the presence of our loved one’s but we are just borrowing them so enjoy our time we have.
Sorry to almost end on such a sombre note but reality is real. To sum up:Keep things simple; Practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, is one way to tackle stress;Give yourself spending limitsTry to take time out for yourself, and don’t try to do everything on your own.Don’t expect too much.If all else fails, try to smile through gritted teeth.
About the Author
I suffered with stress for years until I learnt the secret is not to try and avoid stress but how to use it to your advantage.
For a Complementary Report On Stress and Anxiety go to http://www.stresscopingstrategies.com
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