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5 Tips to Survive Holiday Stress

Every year, the holidays swing around again, bringing joy and light.… or maybe not so much. The reasons that make the holiday season special, can also make it overwhelming and stressful. As you grow older, the tidings of comfort and joy can gradually be devoured by the pressure of planning big family feasts, buying, and giving gifts, and doing it all. So, if thinking about the hustle and bustle of the holiday season leaves you feeling anxious, you’re certainly not alone.

What Causes Holiday Stress? 

While holidays are meant to bring feelings of happiness and love, they can also be a reason for excessive stress and anxiety for many people. A recent poll conducted by Verywell Mind discovered that about 80% of American adults find the holiday season to be “somewhat” or “very” stressful. So, what is it with holidays that has us all so bothered? There can be many reasons why the time leading up to the holiday season can cause stress and anxiety. Some significant causes of holiday stress include—

  • Planning parties
  • Pressure to give or get gifts
  • Financial issues
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Lack of time
  • Passive-aggressive family members
  • Hosting a holiday dinner
  • Hassle and cost of traveling
  • Family responsibilities
  • Excessive commitments
  • Abnormal routines and schedules
  • Managing the expectations of others
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Increased temptations, time demands, and the winter blues can disrupt the stress management strategies that keep all our tension in check.  

How to Survive the Holiday Stress 

Holidays offer the chance to reconnect with friends, family, and loved ones. But due to certain holiday demands, it can also be hectic and stressful. But is it wise to let stress ruin the joy and celebration of Christmas? Refusing to let stress scare you and run your life is nothing but a choice. Try to do the things that you love and stay away from whatever triggers stress during holidays.  

This year before the stress of the holidays sneaks up on you, here are five tips to avoid holiday stress and enjoy most of the holiday season — 

1.       Plan Ahead

The main reason people get all stressed out during holidays is “lack of time.” Finding enough time to complete all the holiday activities is challenging. Although there is no “perfect planning,” try making a list of things you want to do. Then, plan your menus and make a shopping list. Set aside specific days for shopping, cooking, and baking, connecting with friends, family and engaging in other activities. It will reduce your stress level to a minimum. Be thorough while making the lists to prevent any last-minute disaster. Also, make sure to arrange help for meal prep and clean-up. 

2.       Keep Your Finances in Check

During the holiday season, one of the most important factors to keep in mind is to stick to your budget. Try to be realistic about what you can afford during the holidays and what you cannot. The best way is to create a fixed budget and don’t stray from it. Remember, the sentiment behind a gift is what’s most important, rather than the expense affecting you after the holidays are over.

3.       Indulge in Moderation

Holidays are all about delicious treats. It is okay to indulge in foods that you may only have once a year. But make sure you are not entirely abandoning healthy eating habits. Five sugar cookies and two glasses of eggnog in the morning are not healthy during holidays. It will increase your sugar levels drastically and leave you feeling ill and depressed a few hours later. Everything in moderation during holidays is the key to staying healthy and happy. If you are confused about what diet to follow during holidays, you can consult with an expert Farrell’s nutrition coach. This way, you can be stress-free about overeating and weight gain.

4.       Don’t Be Afraid to Say “No.”

It’s alright to say “no,” to the things you don’t like to do. During holidays say “yes” to all those events and things that will bring you joy. And make sure you are saying “no” to obligations that usually cause you stress and strain. If working a few extra hours will make you happy so you can buy your family a new television, do it. On the other hand, if your colleague or neighbor that you’re not too close to invites you to a party and you don’t feel like going, feel free to say “no..” Trust me, later you will be happy for what you did.

5.       Don’t Abandon Healthy Habits

During the holidays, everyone wants to look and feel great. However, not many of us stick to a healthy diet and exercise routine. People follow diet and workout the whole year, and during holidays they forget all about healthy lifestyle which takes them back to square one. Additionally, overindulgence can result in guilt and added holiday stress. So, try to stick to your fitness routine and perform cardio and strength training to stay in shape. If you want to lose weight, it is better to continue going to your regular fitness classes. However, you can also attend Farrell’s online classes to work out from home too. 

To get in shape faster before the holidays, you can join Farrell’s at any time. Farrell’s offers group fitness classes that help beginners learn kickboxing, strength training, as well as offers one-on-one coaching, and personalized nutrition meal plans to help lose those extra pounds. 

The holidays are a great way to show others you care by sending gifts and cooking delicious treats. But during this time, it is more important to take care of yourself too. Stress affects everyone. The way you are dealing with it makes all the difference. Try to follow the aforementioned five tips to avoid holiday stress, stick to healthy habits, and listen to what your body and mind tell you. If you are prepared, you can spend a stress-free holiday this year.


Delony, D. J. (2021, September 23). 13 Ways to Reduce Holiday Stress. Retrieved from Ramsey:

Melissa Conrad Stöppler. (2021, May 13). Holiday Depression, Anxiety, and Stress. Retrieved from MedicineNet:

Scott, E. (2021, January 15). Managing the Seemingly Inevitable Holiday Season Stress. Retrieved from Verywellmind:

Small, R. (2021, October 27). 7 Tips for Surviving Holiday Stress. Retrieved from bphope:


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