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Managing Stress and Setting Boundaries during the Holiday Season

Monday, November 27, 2023

The holidays can be a sweet time of year, but they can also be stressful! Traveling from school to home, fitting in time to see your hometown friends while also spending time with your family, and pushing through your inevitably busy schedule all while trying to relax and enjoy your break is difficult!

Michael from the office being mean to Dwight

What are some causes of holiday stress?

  • Unhappy Memories. Going home for the holidays can make a person look back on the past, but sometimes those memories are more bitter than sweet.
  • Toxic relatives. It’s not uncommon to find yourself in the same room with a relative you hoped to avoid for the rest of the year.
  • Change. The holidays can also be a really great way to point out all the change that has happened through the years, and sometimes we don’t always want to be reminded of that change.
  • What’s stayed the same. Or for others maybe it’s the exact opposite. You’re growing tired of the same faces, places and surface level conversation between you and the relative you’re required to see once a year.

How to control the stress

Take some time for yourself; after all it is your break. Sure, you’ve got the required events you might dread but carve out a little time to go for a walk by yourself and just enjoy the moment – or if you’re anything like me, I’ll be finding a book and hiding in my room for a few hours…

Changing your outlook on the situation can be beneficial. Do what you can for yourself to make it a little more enjoyable. Maybe it’s time for you to introduce a new dish at the dinner table that you’d rather have than the traditional turkey and ham. Try encouraging your family to try something new this year, like watching a classic holiday movie at your local theatre or see how well your family or friends do on an ice rink!

The bottom line is, while the holiday season is often centered around many activities, remember you should enjoy the season too!


Kevin from Home Alone eating pizza


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