Holiday time can be a beautiful, restful time spent with people we love; opening presents, catching up on sleep, and reconnecting with family and friends.
The holidays can also be a stressful time during which our brains and waistlines suffer.
Many times, holiday time is a confusing combination of both experiences.
In fact, in a 2017 survey, only 10% of people reported feeling "little-to-no stress" during the holiday season.
Whether you are a holiday lover or a bit of a grinch, there are a few things you can do to stay healthy and minimize stress over the holiday season. Here are some tools to keep you (mostly) sane, (mostly) active, and free of regrets come January 1.
Learn to exercise mindfulness around your health practices; mental and physical.
What does this mean?
Ask yourself a LOT of questions, and be honest (but don't judge).
For example: if you find yourself struggling with healthy eating, ask yourself,
"why am I eating right now (hunger, nerves, boredom, pressure)?"
"how do certain foods make me feel as opposed to others?"
"what are some of the triggers that make me eat or behave in ways that make me feel worse?"
Ask yourself similar questions about your mental health, your exercise habits, and anything else that deserves your attention during this time of year.
Do one thing each day that is genuinely GOOD for you (and a little selfish).
Exercise, do some yoga, read your favorite book for an hour, listen to a podcast and go for a walk. Whatever makes you feel good and makes you healthier, take a small percentage of your day to prioritize YOU.
Do something a bit different.
A quick way to break out of a rut is to try something new. Ideally, this will be a physical challenge or novelty. Try a new type of class, find a new pilates video on YouTube, go for a walk or a hike with someone that you don't normally spend time with.