Stress-Free Holiday Tips

  • Published
  • By Ms. Jamie Ellis
  • 926th Wing Director of Psychological Health

Good morning 926th family,

As we approach the holiday season, I wanted to wish every a Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas.  The holidays are a wonderful time to reflect and connect with those that you call family and/or friends.  The holidays can also be a stressful time for others - with seeing family that you may not connect well with or the stress of having to play host or hostess. 

Some tips to stay stress-free this holiday include:

  • Learn to say no and set good boundaries- The holidays can mean being around family that can be extremely negative or triggering for you.  Know that you can set a boundary and take a break when needed.  I learned a long time ago that I can only handle so much of some of my family without feeling anxious, so I learned that making an excuse and going outside for “a breath of fresh air and a walk” really helps calm me.
  • Have reasonable expectations - You don’t have to do everything and be everything to everybody.  This is your family and/or friends they know you and don’t expect to be anybody but you.  I remember the best memories I have of the holidays include all those times when things didn’t go quite right but turned out wonderful.
  • Keep it affordable- Remember you don’t have to go broke trying to please everyone.  As my kids age, the gift request become more expensive and smaller.  I try to stay within a certain amount per kid which helps.  Also don’t buy a gift just to buy a gift. If you wouldn’t give a gift to the person you are giving it to without it being Christmas, what is the really good reason of giving to them.  Sometimes a Merry Christmas or a small card can mean more than an elaborate gift.
  • Be grateful for the people around you- Even if you are not going home for the holidays, you can be grateful for those friends around you.  Finding ways to connect to those around you and being grateful can make the holidays much more meaningful.

Whether you are the host or hostess this year or staying in and enjoying Hallmark movies (yes, that is me!), the holidays are a time to reflect on the year and find things in your life that you can be grateful for.  I challenge each of you to use this holiday season to reflect and find things that you are grateful for.  If you become stressed and need to vent, please come see me.

Happy Holidays!