PUBLISHED NOV 13, 2018

Managing Holiday Stress Made Easier

Celebrate SmarterHoliday Zen - Snowman in tree pose

As holiday cheer builds, so can your nerves. Keep the Grinch at bay with these new ways to manage holiday stress...

For when you’re making a list...

Check it twice...then trim and tier it up. Organize your list by people getting gifts (tier 1), stocking stuffers (tier 2), and cards (tier 3). Set a budget for each group and keep track of it all on app like Santa’s Bag. It helps you keep tabs on your ideas, cash, and gives you a checklist so no gift gets left behind.

For when you’re going home for the holidays…

Stay fa-la-la-la focused. Part of what makes going home for the holidays stressful is that you're taken out of your day-to-day. Try sticking to at least one of your routines. Think: listening to your favorite podcast in the AM, reading a book before bed, or going on a run before dinner.

For when you need quiet time…

Be a good elf and volunteer for the chores no one wants. You’re pretty much guaranteed to be the only one up for any of the following: wrapping last-minute gifts, folding the sheets, washing the dishes. Hello, headspace.

For when you’re stressing over last-minute gifts…
Take advantage of free shipping day on December 14th. Hundreds of stores have participated in the past, waiving shipping fees (often with no minimum purchase) for guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve. For a list of this year's participating retailers, check here.

For when your anxiety level is high...

Get grounded. Research shows that weighted blankets can improve sleep and reduce anxiety. Through a ‘grounding’ or ‘earthing’ sensation, they’re supposed to simulate the kind of relaxation you feel when getting a massage. The Gravity Blanket is one option.

For when your aunt says something that makes you nervous…

Sweat it out. Gyms try to lock new members in by January, so you can snag a cheap membership during end-of-year deals. If you’re working out sans gym, do it in daylight. Increasing your sunlight exposure can help combat seasonal blues. Needless to say, exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy, happy people just don't yell at their aunts.

This year, do it all smarter


For when you got something you didn’t want…
Give it to grandma. Gift Card Granny lets you sell unwanted gift cards and buy discounted ones. Cue: a gift exchange you actually want to participate in.

For when you’re invited to a potluck…

RSVP with your slow cooker. If you’ve got a ton of potlucks to attend, commit to crockpot recipes like this starter or this dessert. That way you can set it and (almost) forget it. And before you unplug that crock pot...make it your MVP for meal-prep when those events all fall on the same week.

For when you can’t stomach another dinner...
Take a deep breath. Try the Abdominal Breathing Technique to calm your nerves. Here’s how to do it: put one hand on your chest and the other on your belly. Take 6-10 deep, slow breaths per minute, for 10 minutes. Bai, jingle hell.

For when all else fails…

Make spiked cider. Psst…buy that liquor in bulk from Costco. Due to state laws, Costco can’t restrict the sale of wine and alcohol to only its members. Head over to member services and ask for a one-day shopping pass for alcohol. Salud.

PS: If you want mental health resources, we have some for you here. You can also click here for more immediate help.


PPS: These are partner products, which means if you purchase, theSkimm may get something in return.

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