Holidays can be filled with joy, laughter, and happiness. Yes, that is true. Holidays can also be times of worry, sadness, and fear. The reality is we can experience all these emotions at one time or another.
The special date is on the calendar. Months, weeks, days and hours fly by as activities fill our days and nights. Fun times, family dinners, work parties, religious events, time for shopping, baking, thinking, rethinking and more fill our brains. Our bodies work overtime trying to stay physically and mentally healthy.
Will the ever-growing “to-do” list have an end?
Does this all sound familiar? I’ve been there. Yes, I understand. Many of us have experienced the stress of the holidays.
I have learned important lessons when stress and worry invade my thoughts. One of the first things I do is to breathe slowly. Taking a deep breath in through the nose and breathing out through the mouth. Ahh… Several more breaths and I can feel my body calming.
Recently, the pastor at our church asked the congregation to take a moment and relax our shoulders. He shared how people don’t realize the impact of having tense shoulders. While the congregation took a deep breath in and let it out, I could see shoulders relaxing and lowering.
This is another method to help overcome stress during the holidays. Check your shoulders. Are you tense? Can you relax your shoulders?
Another way for me to overcome stress is to pray. I ask God for help. This comforts me.
One big lesson I have learned over the years is that I don’t have to be in charge of everything. I don’t have to bake all the cookies, cook every meal, attend every church service, visit every person on the same day, etc.
By sharing the list of “to-do” items, I may be blessing someone else while they are blessing me by helping.
Breathe, pray, ask for help. Remember you don’t have to do everything by yourself. Some things may never be finished and that is okay.
What are some ways you overcome stress during the holidays?
Melissa Henderson is a writer of inspirational messages through fiction, non-fiction, devotions, guest blogs, articles and more. Her first children’s book “Licky the Lizard: was released in 2018.