Healthy Habits

Finding Balance During the Holidays

Cross-country skiing

Content provided by the Health & Wellness Team at GBS Benefits

The most wonderful time of the year can also be the most stressful time of year. Many are in danger of wearing themselves out while facing the holiday overload with already busy schedules divided into shopping, traveling, hosting guests, end-of-year workloads, and attending holiday parties.

It’s easy to get swept up in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Finding balance among these demands can help avoid burnout and stress. Take time at the beginning of the month to envision the holidays and identify what really matters. Then plan, preserve, and prioritize schedules to make time for what is most important.

Continue reading for tips on finding balance during the busy holiday season.

Stay merry

Make time for personal hobbies and self-care. It’s difficult to be there for others when self-care is on the back burner. Consider developing better work-life balance by eating lunch away from the workstation or logging off once the workday is over. Looking for something new in your self-care routine? Check out “12 Ways to Practice Self-Care at Christmas.”

Make a list, check it twice

Create a to-do list and divide items into three categories: must do, want to do, and feel obligated to do. This can help prioritize and make daily tasks feel less overwhelming. Stay organized by listing family gatherings and holiday parties in your daily planner or calendar app.

Settle in for a long winter’s nap

Make sleep a priority this holiday season. Sleep is beneficial for immunity and for mental and emotional health. Sleep refreshes and reboots the body, which can be extremely valuable when fighting sickness. If you start feeling ill, cancel your plans and set aside your to-do lists to keep symptoms from escalating. Find time to meditate and take a break from daily stressors.

Don’t get your tinsel in a tangle

Outsource your least favorite tasks. If cooking for a large group, baking cookies, or hosting guests are key stressors, don’t do them. Assign others to bring food or cater a holiday event, pick up cookies from the local bakery, or find an alternative location for a party. Keep things simple and focus on what brings you joy.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Find time for enjoyable events and traditions. Don’t be afraid to say no if an activity doesn’t sound enjoyable. Traditions can be changed or altered to fit a new family dynamic or a busy schedule. Stress-free activities might include driving around the neighborhood to see the Christmas lights, making hot chocolate and enjoying a holiday movie, or sitting around the Christmas tree reminiscing on past holiday memories.

Say hello to friends you know

Make time for social connections. Try to avoid getting too caught up in holiday shopping and focus more on quality time. Time can often mean more than a material gift.

Walk in a winter wonderland

Take breaks for sunshine and movement throughout the day. Bundle up and enjoy the fresh air. Embrace colder weather and find fun activities that are specific to winter months, such as sledding, ice fishing, or snowshoeing. In areas that don’t experience much snow, try to find new local parks, or go for a walk with a friend.

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