Reducing anxiety this holiday season involves incorporating stress-management strategies and prioritizing self-care. Here are some tips to help manage anxiety:

1. Set Realistic Expectations:
Establish realistic expectations for yourself during the holidays. It’s okay not to do everything, and perfection is not necessary (or possible!).

2. Plan and Prioritize:
Create a schedule or to-do list to organize your tasks and events. Prioritize the most important activities and consider saying no to commitments that may contribute to stress. For more on time management & efficiency, we highly recommend checking out the work of Laura Vanderkam!

3. Practice Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques:
Engage in mindfulness practices, meditation, visualizations, deep breathing exercises, massage, or floating to calm your mind and body. These practices may help manage anxiety.

4. Stay Active:
Incorporate regular physical activity into your routine. Exercise is a proven way to reduce stress and improve mood. Consider taking a walk, practicing yoga, or enjoying a workout class.

5. Limit Stimulants:
Be mindful of your caffeine and sugar intake, as these substances can contribute to increased anxiety. Opt for herbal teas and nutritious snacks instead.

6. Set Boundaries:
Clearly communicate your boundaries with friends and family. It’s okay to decline invitations or limit the time you spend in certain social situations if they contribute to anxiety.

7. Connect with Loved Ones:
Spend time with supportive and understanding friends or family members. Sharing your feelings can provide relief, and their presence can offer comfort.

8. Get Adequate Sleep:
Ensure you are getting enough quality sleep. Lack of sleep can exacerbate feelings of anxiety. Establish a bedtime routine and create a comfortable sleep environment.

9. Budget Wisely:
Plan a realistic budget for holiday expenses to avoid financial stress. Consider alternatives like homemade gifts or creative activities that don’t strain your finances.

10. Seek Professional Support:
If anxiety becomes overwhelming, consider seeking support from a mental health professional. Therapy or counseling can provide valuable tools to manage stress.

11. Focus on Gratitude:
Practice gratitude by reflecting on positive aspects of your life. This can shift your perspective and foster a sense of appreciation during the holiday season.

12. Take Breaks:
Give yourself permission to take breaks and recharge. Find moments of solitude to relax and regroup.

Remember that it’s okay to prioritize your mental health, especially during potentially stressful times. Implementing these strategies can contribute to a more enjoyable and balanced holiday season. If your anxiety persists, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

Gain more tips for managing anxiety in Colleen Smith’s self-paced, lifetime access course, Let’s Talk About Anxiety (and what we can do about it) HERE!