By Brianna Siciliano
Winter is one of the most stressful times of the year; no matter which direction you look, you will see holiday decorations, tasty treats, amazing sales, and huge crowds. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and stressed during the most wonderful time of the year, but thankfully, there are ways to get rid of stress during this season.
Holiday stress can be caused by many things, therefore it is vital to ask yourself what makes you feel nervous, anxious, and stressed around the holiday season. Is it the unhappy memories from childhood? Is this the first holiday season since you began a new chapter in your life? Do the holidays make you feel out of control? Well, whatever the case may be, it is important to acknowledge the fact that the key to getting rid of anxiety and stress that the holiday season brings is taking control over the holidays instead of letting the holidays take control of you.
As we get closer and closer to celebrating important days with family and friends, we receive many offers and invitations to various holiday gatherings. We feel obligated to attend the parties that we have continued to attend in the past, and we feel obligated to bring foods that people expect. We do not want to do any of these things, but we feel like we have to. Well, instead of giving in to these “obligations,” step aside and ask yourself, “Why am I doing these things when they make miserable? What makes me miserable about this situation?”
Be conscious about the choices you are making. If you know that going to Aunt Pam’s house with your family is going to bring unneeded anxiety and stress, then don’t attend the gathering! Holiday traditions are supposed to be happy and joyous, not miserable and stressful. Try something new this holiday season, and most importantly, only participate in gatherings and obligations that will be cheerful and stress-free.