By Kirsten Garvin - Team Member and Staff Writer for The Cardiac Bear
Mental and Emotional Stressors
For some, the holiday season is filled to the brim with joy and fun; but for others it can be filled with challenges and stressors. Grief and loss, complicated family dynamics, and an above average amount of stressors can put a lot of pressure on individuals and families. Even in the midst of experiencing the cheer and festivities some may feel distress as they find themselves struggling to maintain moderation in their nutritional plan.
During this 3 part series in our blog posts, we’ll delve into practical steps for ways to maintain healthy living mentally, physically and financially during the holiday season. We’ll also be looking at some ways to manage stress and self-care that can be incorporated into daily life long after the Christmas tree has been tucked away back in the attic.
Manage expectations going into the holiday season
Think back to the last few holiday seasons and take a mental inventory of the challenges you’ve had both emotionally, physically and financially.
Perhaps you notice that there’s a tendency to feel a greater sense of loss and struggle with grief over loved ones who have passed. Or heightened anxiety regarding the frequent changes of routine that happens often during the season. Maybe feelings of insecurity when it comes to being unsure of how to interact within shaky family dynamics. Or increased work hours that make you more tired and irritable and more likely to squabble with your spouse. Perhaps your challenges are mainly physical, and you find that your body is sorer and more fatigued during the winter. Or maybe you’re angry at yourself that consistently during the holidays you end up way, way, WAY overdoing it on the Christmas goodies, and you feel the discomfort of weight gain each year.
Be truthful but kind to yourself as you make your mental inventory; being aware of your limitations and past challenges is key. Do you notice any recurring themes in the stressors you face each year? More to come, so bookmark this page so you can see what’s next!