It's the most wonderful time of the year. And yet half of us spend the holiday season feeling frazzled and stressed. With Christmas just around the corner, we know that everyone feels as though they have a lot on their plates. There's gifts still to buy, presents to wrap up and the house always seems to be in chaos. We get it. Us too.
So for this week's Wellbeing Wednesday, we thought we'd look at ways you can reduce your stress this year, and remind yourself to take things in your stride a little more. We're not saying this is ground-breaking advice, but if gives one or two of you a reminder to slow down, then it's done the trick!
1. Give yourself a present buying deadline
So many of us leave our gift shopping right up to the last minute. The shops feeling more than a little overwhelming right now, it's only going to get worse as December continues... Instead of leaving things til the last minute, give yourself a fake deadline, and tell yourself you'll be all done by the X of December (you pick the date!). That way you'll be able to avoid that last minute shopping panic, plus you might even save money by not panic buying presents you don't need to!
2. Use of a charity gift wrapping service
In most major shopping centres, you'll find charities offering a gift wrapping services during the festive period. While it might seem like a little bit of an indulgence, if you're feeling overwhelmed with your wrapping, these services are well worth investing in! Plus, you're doing your bit for charity by using them. Win win situation really!
3. Treat loved ones to experiences and handmade gifts
What most of us forget at this time of year, is that we don't need lots of stuff. We get caught up in the madness of the holidays and too occupied with spending (sometimes too much). It's a fact that too many of us take on debt over the holidays trying to shower our loved ones with things they don't really need - which again is a big contributor to our stress levels. This year, why not treat your nearest and dearest to an experience - maybe a gift voucher for a day out or an activity. Or take to Pinterest for some inspiration and try your hand at some crafting, to give them something extra special. There's nothing warms the heart more than knowing your loved one has taken time out of their busy schedule to make something for you.
4. Try to get plenty of sleep
Whether you're working for a company, or yourself, we all try to cram in too much before the Christmas break. Chances are you're trying to squeeze in extra hours to make up for the Christmas period, but just make sure you're not taking on too much - or neglecting your sleep. Sleep is key for your body to repair itself and without enough of it, we feel tired, run down and even more stressed. Make sure you're giving yourself plenty of rest to cope with extra demands at work - and at home!
5. Make space for 'me time'
Amidst such a busy period, it's easy to let self-care rituals fall by the wayside, but this year, make sure you're carving out time for yourself. Whether it's taking tips from the Miracle Morning and getting up a little bit earlier to do something just for you, enjoying a 10 minute soak in the tub, or getting into bed a little early to enjoy some time reading, try to invest in a little relaxation time and you'll feel the stresses of the day melting away. It might seem a bit self-indulgent, but we promise you, you'll be able to handle whatever life throws your way much better if you've had a little time to yourself!