7 Tips for a Stress-Free 2021 Holiday Season
When you’re a little kid, the holidays are filled with magic, joy and wonder. It can still be that way when you’re an adult, but mixed in with the magic and joy is stress, hecticness and headache. But that latter doesn’t necessarily need to define your holiday season, says Allison Yancey, Executive Director of Residences at Wellpoint, an Independent Living, Assisted Living and Memory Care community in Huntsville, Alabama.
“This year we’ve learned just how important it is to be together with the ones we love,” she says. “While 2020 has been quite a ride for all of us, it has put a lot of things into perspective. I, for one, am looking forward to celebrating a smaller, more intimate and less hectic holiday with those I care about.”
Whether your idea of a happy holiday is a huge family gathering around a loaded dinner table or an intimate night by the fire with just a few of your loved ones, here are some tips for managing holiday stress.
Take care of your body to help it manage stress.
Although the holidays can be a never-ending buffet with little opportunity for exercise, resist the urge to overindulge on the regular. Instead, make sure you’re eating a generally healthy diet, get plenty of exercise and be sure to get a good night’s sleep. If you’re not caring for your mental, emotional and physical health, it’s easy to get run down.
Remember that Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) peaks during the winter months, so make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin D and natural sunlight to make sure your circadian rhythm is on track.
Cut down your to-do list.
Is your holiday to-do list about a mile long? Forget about checking it twice – instead, go through it and prune out anything that isn’t completely necessary to your health and happiness. See what traditions you can adapt, what tasks you can outsource and what you can get rid of entirely. Does the idea of addressing holiday cards make you break out in hives? Does just thinking about baking dozens upon dozens of cookies make you exhausted? Keep the tasks and traditions you love, and let the rest go. You’ll be amazed at how much happier this will instantly make you.
Rethink gift giving.
Yes, we enjoy giving and getting gifts. But give yourself grace this year and cut down the number of people you’re buying for. Maybe this is the year that you and your family adopt a “kids only” gift policy, or everyone draws one person to buy a gift for. You may find that there are other members of your family who would be relieved to cut down their gift lists, too. After all, most of us have the “stuff” we need, so instead, consider time spent together as the best gift of all. In lieu of giving gifts, you could also consider donating your time or money to a worthy cause.
Scale back holiday gatherings.
That doesn’t mean you have to reduce the number of people you have over – far from it. What we mean by “scaling back” is simply making it easier for you to host a gathering. Forget fine china and white tablecloths this year. Instead, use paper plates and plastic utensils that make cleaning up a snap. Instead of doing a huge meal with all the trimmings, consider organizing a potluck, serve heavy appetizers or even have food catered in. You don’t even have to have traditional holiday food if you don’t want to.
Don’t go overboard on decor.
It’s perfectly okay to put a nice wreath on your door in lieu of a light display worthy of Clark Griswold. Having just a few focal points can make your home feel festive without you having to spend days upon days decorating. And it means a lot less for you to pack away once the holidays are over.
You don’t have to go to every holiday party, concert or gathering that you’re invited to. Pick and choose only the ones that truly bring you joy and send your regrets for the others. Saying “no” extends to tasks and chores for others, too. You don’t have to sign up to bring dozens of cookies to this gathering or that.
Practicing gratitude is something that has become quite popular over the years, and what better time to start this practice in your life than during the holidays? It’s easy to get grouchy and bah-humbug-y about everything we have to do in order to have a happy holiday. Instead of channeling your inner Scrooge, take some time to think about the things you’re thankful and grateful for. Focusing on the good in life improves our mental, emotional and physical health and is a surefire way to put you in the holiday mood.
Where It All Comes Together
Opening in February 2021, Residences at Wellpoint provides an exceptional experience for those who desire Independent Living, Assisted Living or Memory Care in the Huntsville, Alabama area. As part of the broader Wellpoint Community “campus,” we cultivate an engaged, intergenerational community unlike any other. Here, we celebrate well-being with an array of social programs; innovative, on-site medical technology; a healthy, fulfilling lifestyle and so much more.
Here, our residents enjoy complete freedom of choice as well as the ability to plan their days however they choose. This is because we take the tedious routines of everyday life off your hands so that you can enjoy your life any way you wish. Go on an outing, enjoy the community, get fit in the fitness center, enjoy our dining bistro or shoot a game of pool in the sports/billiards bar. It’s all waiting for you.
No matter what your needs are, we can meet them. Our lifestyle philosophy supports every need along your journey, whether you desire Independent Living, need the assistance of our Assisted Living program or begin to need Memory Care. However your needs may change, we offer on-site medical assistance and supportive services so you can continue enjoying the engaging lifestyle you love. Contact us to learn more!
Call us at 256.274.5312 for more information or to schedule a personal visit today.