Coping with Holiday Stress

By Brandon Risher, MA, LPA, HSP-PA

The holiday season can be a time of great stress and anxiety for many people. Many traditions are revived and annual financial, emotional, and psychological stresses come to the surface. Here are a few tips to assist people in coping with holiday stress.

  • Delegate time with work and home with others when you can. Balancing your job and family responsibility can be difficult. Make sure that you delegate tasks to others if possible. Prioritizing what has to be done versus was you want done can eliminate some stress.

  • If you take medication, remember to take it as prescribed. This also includes children. The holiday season can throw off one’s schedule. People are waking up at different times, traveling, and potentially staying in places that are not their home. Due the break in the routine, it is easier for a person to forget to take their medications. More often than not, some remember that they need to take it as a reaction to a trigger from holiday stress. Being consistent with your medication regime can assist in coping with stress.

  • Recognize your triggers from family members. Family member can be a source of stress. Many people feel anxiety visiting family members where underlying stress exists. Knowing how one may be triggered by family member can help. For example, knowing that your sister is passive-aggressive can give you some agency in if and how you will engage.

  • Find spaces for self-care. Self-care is important to one’s health. For example, if you exercise, please continue to do so. Although it may more difficult to find, continuing self-care will give a place to release tense and stress.

  • Finally, do not overspend. Many people attempt run into debt attempts to get their loved ones what they want. For many, it make take years for people to pay off their credit cards. Be reasonable about what you can afford to spend.

The holiday season can be a time of great stress and joy. Understanding and coping both your internal and external stresses can make your holiday a more fruitful experience.

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