Feature

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How to Prevent Holiday Burnout
The winter holidays are an exciting
time of year. The decorations, the
carols, the food and the festivities — it
is certainly a fun-filled time. However,
for some, this over-stimulation of the
senses can be a trigger for stress and
anxiety. While all this is not entirely
unavoidable, there are steps that you can
take to safeguard yourself against holiday
burnout.
1. Make your list and delegate
Between decking the halls with boughs
of holly and making the perfect Christmas
dinner, there are a plenty of things to be
done during the holiday season. Rather
than toting around a crammed to-do
list, delegate. Make decorating the tree a
project for the kids, and have close friends
and family bring their favourite holiday
dishes to a potluck-style Christmas dinner.
When it comes to getting things ready for
the holidays, the more, the merrier!
2. Prioritize
The weeks leading up to Christmas and New Year’s Eve
are often the most hectic few weeks of the year. With all the
holiday party invitations coming through, we may be tempted
to try and go to them all. While that is indeed possible, it
could also be very physically and mentally draining. Rather
than trying to go to all the events, whittle your list down to the
few that you are looking forward to the most. Saving yourself
for the events that truly matter will allow you to have the
energy to actually enjoy yourself.
3. Find bliss in imperfection
With the onslaught of images of beautifully decorated
homes on social media, it is difficult to not strive for
perfection in your holiday preparations. This, however, adds
a lot of unnecessary stress and fatigue. Rather than worrying
about having every detail of your tree, décor and holiday feast
perfect, embrace the imperfections. Having an easygoing
approach to your holiday preparations will de-escalate any
anxious feelings that may be brewing, and will give you room
to enjoy the beauty that you create.
4. Eat like Rudolph, not Santa
Food is celebratory, and during the holiday season, this is
no exception. It is important, however, to be mindful of what
you consume and to indulge in seasonal treats in moderation.
Rather than gorging on cookies at the office, pick one or two
small treats to enjoy at a special event. During the rest of
the time, eat a balanced diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits
and clean water. Keeping your diet mostly clean during the
holidays will help maintain your energy and will prevent preparty
sugar crashes.
5. Unplug and unwind
One of the most important things that you can do to
prevent burnout is to give yourself the space and time to
relax. Find a quiet time during the day that can be scheduled
off as “you-time.” Listen to music, draw, exercise or meditate;
do whatever it is that takes your mind off the chaotic energy
outside, and allows you to ground and focus inwards.
The holidays are an exhilarating time of year. Rather than
trying to do absolutely everything, allow yourself to slow
down a little. Take in the sights, sounds and smells that
make the holiday season so special — the decorations, the
carols, the delicious gingerbread cookies — and share these
moments with your loved ones. Above all, be compassionate
towards yourself. By showing yourself love through rest and
restoration, you’ll be ready to take on 2017 with abundant
energy.