Managing Holiday Stress


Excitement is already beginning to build as our tribe anticipates the arrival of Aunts, Uncles and cousins for the Holidays. The kids (despite their elder years) are already getting giddy!

Me? I’m excited too!

I adore the early morning visits. Sometimes the coffee and conversation last from 7 to 10 am. I eagerly anticipate setting out the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. I giggle when I think about our annual movie and egg nog tradition.

Unfortunately, physics always seems to come into play during the holidays. What goes up, must come down.

Decades of experiences has taught me that my enthusiasm for holiday activity (work and play) leaves me out of gas by the time everyone heads home.

I’ve experienced some holidays in which this shift has been so dramatic I ended up run-down, sick, or bed-ridden with a migraine! Can anybody else relate?!

Years ago a friend made a suggestion that I’ve done my best to adhere to. Well before company arrives I do my best to schedule a massage for sometime after the holiday. Usually its a day or two after company leaves.

If I’m on my feet a ton while cooking…no problem. I know in  few days my tootsies will get a rub down. Headache because of late nights and lack of sleep. I’m already anticipating my nap while the masseuse is at work.

Long story short, the small investment of self-care is a welcome and often needed treat. It helps me physically but it also carries me psychologically through the demands of the holiday when things get harried.

Not everyone has time or money for a massage but there are great alternatives…

  • Next time you see bath salts and nail polish on sale pick them up. Check your calendar for when company leaves or for when you return home. Make an appointment between you and your bathtub! Schedule a soak and then polish your toes when you’re done!
  • Tuck a good book away. Save it for that hallowed moment when everyone else is in bed. You’ll have the vision of a stolen moment dancing in your head while you dance around the kitchen feeding the crew.
  • Be on the lookout for a great chick flick. Buy it or rent and then make a date for down time. Popcorn, apple slices and being a blob for 90 minutes on the couch can do wonders for a girl who’s “holidayed out”.

Quick! Before the magical madness of the season begins be a DoAhead Diva and plan yourself a break!

What is one act of self-maintenance or self-restoration you could plan ahead for this holiday season?

Your DoAhead Friend,

Speak Your Mind