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  • Writer's pictureMarijosephe Bradford

5 Ways to Stay Calm and Happy This Holiday Season

The holiday season is upon us, and if you are anything like me, it can make you feel a little stressed. Even though I love many holiday traditions, the holiday season also brings high expectations for family gatherings and spending time with friends.

Don't worry--you don't have to let stress overwhelm your holiday cheer! Here are five ways to stay calm and happy this holiday season.

Stay positive and don't focus on the negative

When you wake up on holiday morning, don't focus on the negative things that could happen. The holiday season can be a stressful time of year for many people, so if something does go wrong it might not seem like too big of a deal--it's just another part of holiday stress!

Focus on what you love about the holiday season

Instead of focusing on holiday stressors, spend time thinking about all the things you love about this time of year. Do you like decorating your home? Getting together with friends and family? Relaxing by a fire after everything is put away for another year? Whatever it is that makes you feel calm and happy, try to do it as much as possible during the holiday season.

Be grateful for what you have

Thinking about holiday traditions has made me realize that I am very lucky. Even though things don't always go the way you expect them to, it's important to remember what is most important in your life. We can't predict what we'll find in the coming months, but we do know that no matter how tough things get, it's never too late to stop and rest!

Avoid comparing yourself to others.

The holiday season is a great time to support your friends and family, but it can also be easy to compare yourself or your holiday traditions with those around you. It's important not to let comparison take away from the holiday cheer--and remember that everyone has different holiday traditions!

Take care of yourself

It's easy to let holiday stress take over your life, but you can't do that if you don't care for yourself. Make sure you are getting enough sleep (stress causes fatigue!), exercising regularly (exercise boosts endorphins!), and eating well (healthy foods make healthy minds!).

If all else fails...take a break. Get outside during daylight hours to get some fresh air and just be with yourself. Meditate and think about the year that you've been through and what you've accomplished. Think about all of the wonderful things that are coming your way and everything you have to be thankful for. Take a holiday from holiday stress!

Find peace in the chaos of the holidays by recognizing that it's okay not to have everything perfect all the time. Learn to let go of holiday expectations and just enjoy your loved ones. Consider how valuable your time together is. Relax with holiday music, holiday movies, and holiday treats!

Be grateful for what you have in your life during the holiday season. Share the love by giving gifts to others or doing something nice for someone else so they can feel loved too. Give yourself time off from worrying about things outside of your control because it is not worth ruining your holiday over. Find peace and happiness by staying calm and making the holiday season about love!

Take care of yourself, take a break when you need to, be grateful for what you have in your life right now, share the love with others, and stay calm this holiday season. Make it all about love!

Make a list of things that make you genuinely happy.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, make a list of people or things that can help calm you down and then call them for support. If holiday travel is involved, try to plan ahead as much as possible by booking flights early and making reservations at your hotel. Make a simple list that makes you happy so that you can revisit it when you're feeling overwhelmed or stressed. It will help you keep things in perspective and keep holiday drama to a minimum.

Take some time for yourself when you can find it, even if it's just ten minutes while the kids nap or play quietly after school. This is important so that you don't burn out on holiday cheer and feel like all of your hard work isn't appreciated by anyone else around you

Spend quality time doing something you enjoy. This could be baking cookies or watching football. Anything that makes you feel happy and relaxed. Whether it's holiday parties or holiday errands, take some time to yourself to avoid getting overwhelmed by the stress of holiday shopping or planning family gatherings.

If your kids are young enough or if they enjoy helping out with holiday baking sessions, let them join in! You can reward their help by letting them lick the spoon or decorating cookies with holiday sprinkles. You can also make holiday crafts together to give as gifts.

Find ways to give back.

Volunteer at a local shelter or soup kitchen during the holidays. Reach out to your loved ones who are alone, and make holiday plans with them.

Remember the main reason for all these celebrations. Christmas is all about the birth of Christ, and the holiday is about celebrating love.

Focus on the love and happiness this holiday season instead of all the material things we buy or do. Take time to reflect, appreciate what you have already been given, and be thankful for it. Remember that not everyone is as fortunate as you are during these holidays.

We all have a choice in how we see the world. Every day, you get to decide whether to focus on what makes your life more difficult or find ways to make yourself happy and create beauty around you. So stop waiting for things to change before you take care of yourself; instead, start by taking small steps today that will help build up into something bigger tomorrow. And don’t forget about gratitude! It is scientifically proven that people who are grateful tend to be happier than those who aren't (and they're also healthier). Want some support while working on this? Let us know- I can work with you one-on-one so that you can feel empowered again in just a few short weeks or months. You deserve it!

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