JustSoChristmas Day 5
Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year! But it can also be one of the most stressful time of year, especially for people dealing with anxiety. I’ll be covering 3 main situations that stress me out and how I deal with them. These tips help me survive and enjoy the holidays with anxiety and hopefully, they will help you too!
ACCEPT & ADAPT
Accept where you are in life currently, maybe anxiety has a bit more control over your life at the moment than you would like it to. That’s ok! You will get there, but if your constantly kicking yourself because you can’t do something or find certain situations stressful. You won’t get to enjoy Christmas and the magic that surrounds it! So get rid of any expectations you have if yourself and just adapt and give yourself more options. Figure out what certain situations about the holidays stress you out and work with it.
The chaos in the shopping this time of year is enough to stress anyone out, anxiety or not. If you find yourself getting overwhelmed easily, try calming down some of your senses. If it’s the noise that affects you try using headphones, drown out the noise of the busy shopping centre with some of your favourite songs. Or if you find it visually too much try wearing sunglasses, the tint helps bring down the brightness, making your surroundings more relaxing. Large crowds can also be overwhelming so try utilising the extended shopping hours. There are usually way fewer people out and about later at night, or there are options like click and collect or home delivery that is always helpful.
Usually, Christmas time is when families gather together to celebrate and catch up with extended family. Unfortunately, it can also lead to having to deal with backhanded comments from family members. Just because they are your family does not give them the right to judge you or make you upset. Don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. Standing up for yourself doesn’t necessarily mean stooping to their level with mean or rude comebacks. You can still be civil while standing your ground. Write a list of past mean comments they have made or ideas on what they could say. Then come up with a response to each comment, for example, if someone made a rude comment about me not having my first job yet. I could simply respond that I am currently focusing on my studies to ensure I have the knowledge to get the job I want and while I appreciate their concern its not necessary.
It’s really easy to get overwhelmed during Christmas time which is why you need to stop, breathe and bring yourself back into the current moment and focus on what makes this time of year so special for you. For me personally, it’s spending time with the people I care about and the celebrations leading up to Christmas day. Self-care is also KEY this time of year, make sure you block out at least 30 minutes out of your day to relax and do something nice for yourself. Whether that’s having a mini spa pamper session, reading your favourite book or watching a Christmas movie. Staying organized will also help prevent feeling overwhelmed. Keep track of any upcoming events or gatherings in your calendar. Write out your months to do list and set a goal to complete at least one thing off the list each day. This will prevent any last minute scrambling.
I hope these tips were helpful to anyone else dealing with anxiety at Christmas, know you’re not alone and you’ve got this! And don’t forget to enjoy it, eat all the gingerbread you want and jam out to Christmas carols to your heart’s content.