A Publication of WTVP

It’s easy to forget how stressful the holidays can be until you’re stuck in the thick of it. There are decorations to buy, presents to wrap, family to entertain, cookies to bake and not enough time to relax. But according to Kate Hanley, author of The Anywhere, Anytime Chill Guide, there are plenty of ways to relax this holiday season.

Some situations trigger more stress than others. Being mindful of the situations that cause the most stress for you will help you avoid them. If there’s no way around it, take a deep breath and try to gather your thoughts before responding. Stay away from overeating as a response—it will only bring you more stress in the long run.

If the thought of gaining weight from all the holiday food is getting you down, Hanley suggests you take a few moments to place your hand on your stomach and consciously decide whether you really want that extra piece of pie. You may be surprised to find that you’re actually craving a nap or some quiet time and are not actually hungry. If you find that you really are hungry, dig in!

If you find yourself craving rest, instead of turning to caffeine as a jumpstart, try to spend five minutes by yourself with your feet up. Hanley suggests lying on the floor with your legs propped up against the wall. It may sound silly, but Hanley says “getting your legs above your head is restful to your heart. This pose is restorative and subtly energizing.”

For many people, the holidays can be one big headache. Hanley suggests that you take some advice from traditional Chinese medicine and activate a pressure point in your hands when you feel head pain coming on. There’s a spot located within the small mound of flesh at the bottom of the crease between your thumb and index finger. If you press that spot and hold for a few seconds and repeat on the other hand, your headache will start to go away.

Each person handles stress in his or her own way. Find what works best for you, try to relax, and enjoy the holidays. iBi