Commentary

December 21, 2012

Chill out, not stress out during holidays

It’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year. Yet for many, it’s anything but.

“If the holidays have you overwhelmed, you are not alone,” said Kristin Musch, TriWest Healthcare Alliance Behavioral Health educator. “Expectations are high, to-do lists are long and the budget tight, which can result in sadness, anger, frustration and resentment.”

But there’s good news.

“Stress can be reduced, allowing you to actually enjoy this time,” Musch said. “The key is to plan ahead.”

To stay stress free:

1. Check your expectations. Are they higher now than other times during the year? Ask yourself why. The holidays don’t have to be perfect. Find a way to incorporate a few rituals that bring you happiness and comfort. Fewer expectations can lead to greater appreciation and enjoyment.

2. Manage your time. Schedule specific days and times for shopping, baking, wrapping and other holiday commitments. Make sure that what you are doing is important to you. Add in some scheduled down-time for reading, watching a movie or taking in a favorite hobby.

3. Just say no. This is not the time to take on extra projects at home, school or for others. Know your limits and stick to them. Productivity expert David Allen has sage advice on this topic. “You can do anything, but not everything.”

4. Move it. Feeling overwhelmed? Exercise is one of the best ways to relieve stress, Musch said. The few minutes you take to get in a walk, rake some leaves or go for a run will clear and calm your mind. Include your children or other family members in your activities.

5. Indulge carefully. Whether gift shopping, snacking on tasty holiday treats or celebrating with cocktails, make sure to do it all in moderation. The indulgence now could leave a sour taste in your mouth when that credit card statement or scale presents you with a number you weren’t expecting.

6. Keep visions of sugar plums dancing in your head. That’s right. Sleep is a must during this busy time. It will restore your energy, ward off illness and will keep your head clear during a time of year when we all have a lot on our minds.

7. Laugh it up. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, the saying goes. Surround yourself with people and activities that bring a smile to your face. And be sure to stay away from those that bring you down.

8. Focus on the haves, not the have-nots. Author Melody Beattie may have said it best. “Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” Every day there is something for which to be grateful. Whatever that is, however small it is, identify it, share it, write it down. When we focus on what we have, it truly becomes enough.

For more tips on managing stress, visit TriWest.com/BH.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Who’s afraid of a little blood?

I have been in the Air Force for 22 years and have been a medical laboratory technician since the beginning of my career. The medical or clinical laboratory is where specimens are tested to provide information to medical providers who directly assist in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease in patients. After graduating basic...
 
 

Pursue education for career’s sake

Everyone knows education can be a good bullet on an enlisted performance report, but few know the true value of an education in regard to a military career. The pursuit of an education can be just as valuable as the degree acquired at the end. The knowledge acquired in the pursuit of an education can...
 
 
This-week-in-history

This week in history

1945: P-51 Transition Training Luke Field instructors began to teach a transition course in the North American P 51 Mustang 70 years ago this month when 13 of the aircraft arrived at Luke Field. In the following months, instruc...
 

 
foodnetworkstar

Fly Over: ‘Rose and Crown Pub’ and ‘Food Network Star’

‘Rose and Crown Pub’ A beautiful green countryside, day after day of cloudy skies, rain and fog, and chilly winters and humid summers — if this sounds more appealing to you than sun and desert heat, you’re probably bett...
 
 

Chaplain’s thoughts …

Our generation loves to hear inspiring stories — tales about exceptional heroes who fear nothing and succeed even during difficult times. Yet these extraordinary characters, admired by the people, can only be found in the comics. They’re called super heroes; because one day, by a stroke of luck, they were given incredible powers. However, the...
 
 

How do you stack up?

With upcoming changes to the enlisted performance report and Air Force promotion system, it’s important to understand how you stack up against your peers, not only within your job, but within your unit as well. The days of receiving time in grade and time in service points are numbered. They are being replaced with a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>