This blog post was edited and reformatted from our health article, "Ready, Set, Relax: Simple Tips for Reducing Post-Holiday Stress." Download the original version here.
Ready, Set, Relax: Simple Tips for Reducing Post-Holiday Stress
The holiday season is filled with delicious food and people you love, but it also requires a significant commitment. Whether you’re buying gifts, making recipes, or planning family reunions, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. After the season of giving ends, you might also find yourself running on empty.
As the new year begins, you should start with a rejuvenated spirit. Do you need some help reducing your post-holiday stress? We’ve got you covered with our top five tips:
Catch Up on Sleep
When you don’t get enough sleep, exhaustion can affect your mind, body, and emotions. Rest is foundational to the body’s ability to function normally. If you don’t sleep well at night, consider setting aside time for a short nap during the day. Studies show that a quick, 30-minute nap can help you relax, lower your blood pressure, and re-balance your stress hormones. The blue light from digital screens can also strain your eyes and keep you awake, so avoid using screens right before you want to sleep.
The holidays can throw off your sleeping habits, so it might take a while to get back into your nighttime routine. To help yourself relax, consider taking a warm bath, diffusing lavender essential oil, or reading a book before bed. Do you need a little help falling asleep at night? Check out our eBook, 5 Tips for a Better Night's Sleep. When you prioritize a good night’s sleep, you’ll be well on your way to reducing your stress levels and restoring your energy.
After weeks of holiday events, it’s important to kick the year off with some self-care. What activities do you enjoy? Make a list of your favorite pastimes. Are there any you’ve been putting off because of busyness? Dedicate time to invest in these interests and other enjoyable activities to support your mental, physical, and emotional wellness.
Another way to help reset your mind and spirit is by booking a massage. Getting a massage can ease sore muscles and rejuvenate your energy levels. It might also help improve your sleep by encouraging you to relax. Another restorative form of self-care is yoga, which has the added bonus of helping you strengthen your muscles and increase flexibility.
Remind yourself that it’s okay to make time for what you love, and don’t be afraid to schedule a little self-care between your day-to-day responsibilities.
De-Clutter & Re-Organize
When the holidays end, many people find themselves overwhelmed with excess food and gifts. Reducing all the “stuff” can be a cathartic practice. When you’ve organized a specific place for everything and cleared out all the clutter, it will free your mind and help you feel more at peace.
Most people wait for traditional “spring cleaning,” but getting a head start can give you a sense of purpose amid the late winter months. Plus, a thorough cleaning can help you rid your home of germs that could make you and your family sick.
During cold, dreary weather, it’s hard to get motivated. With family and friend reunions over and another long year ahead, you might feel lethargic or stressed because of mounting responsibilities. One of the best ways to get out of the post-holiday funk is to get moving.
Exercise stimulates your endorphins and improves your mood. Research shows that fitness can also boosts your energy levels. When your body is in good shape, your mind and spirit can follow suit, putting you on the road to whole-person wellness, not just physical fitness.
Throughout the holiday season, you probably say “yes” a lot. From hosting gatherings to buying the perfect gifts, the responsibilities steadily pile higher. By the time it’s all over, you need a well-deserved break. But the rest of the world might not see it that way. As the new year dawns, you’ll have a fresh list of commitments: work schedules, kids’ school responsibilities, day-to-day activities, etc.
Instead of hitting the ground running, be conscious of your limits. If you feel pressured to take on too many obligations, remember it’s okay to tell people you already have too much on your plate. Overcommitting leaves no room for rest or self-care, and you need both to reduce stress. Instead, leave space on your calendar to keep you from getting overwhelmed and give you built-in time to do fun activities or to finish anything you’ve paused.
With the holidays ending, you might expect a reprieve, but the new year will likely take off in full force. If you’re not intentionally adopting stress-relieving practices, you can quickly become overwhelmed. Keep space in your schedule for exercise, self-care, and sleep so you can tackle the new year feeling your best.
If you’re looking for a fresh start, maybe it’s time to get serious about holistic wellness by turning your passion into a career. At Trinity School of Natural Health, we’re dedicated to equipping our students with the tools and resources needed to become certified wellness specialists, whether it’s in holistic fitness, aromatherapy, or even nutritional consulting. Learn more today by calling 800-428-0408, option 2, to speak with an enrollment specialist.