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Managing this year’s holiday anxiety

Managing this year’s holiday anxiety

The holiday season is invariably stressful, and usually comes with its own special brand of anxieties. And seeing as we’re smack-dab in the middle of the worst collapse we’ve ever faced, this holiday season is like anxiety on steroids. 

Holidays in Lebanon 2021 are a difficult time. We are bombarded with obstacles, difficulties and bad news on the daily, so having that as a background to our personal life can be overwhelming in itself. Add to that the usual pressures of holidays and we’ve got a recipe for an imminent breakdown.

So this year, we need to be extra mindful of how we react to this immense stress. Of course, that’s way easier said than done, but there are a few things we can do to manage this hectic season as best as possible, with the least damage possible. 

Read on to find out what tips are most likely to help you manage this year’s holiday stress:

Make time for yourself. 

As impossible as it may sound in this hectic season, we all need to make time for ourselves, time that is just about recovering and recharging. In fact, it’s even more important in times of high stress. So try to pencil in some me-time periodically so you can stay sane until after the new year.

Practice self-compassion. 

Our normal thought is usually to compare this year’s holiday season with those we’ve had in the years before. However, there’s nothing comparable about then and now, and we’ve got to take that into account when managing our expectations of how this holiday season should be. So ease up on yourself, it doesn’t have to be perfect and it doesn’t have to be fancy. It just has to make you and those around you happy, and that can be as simple as making pizza together or singing along to some carols.

Make sure you get sleep.

We all do it, de-prioritizing sleep, thinking “it’s okay, it’s just a few days, I’ll rest up later” every single night. It all adds up and makes us more zombie than human. It’s important to make sure sleep is a priority, even if that means missing a social event or kicking your friends out early. A sleep-deprived you will not enjoy the holidays as much as a rested you!

Practice gratitude.

It’s easy to get lost in the bad things. There’s so much of them hovering around us at all times that it’s almost impossible to avoid. Luckily though, we’ve got a mindfulness tool that helps tremendously with that: the active practice of gratitude. It’s easy, free and it really, really helps. Sit down with yourself for a few minutes and go over the reasons you feel grateful. The loved ones who are safe and healthy, a good thing that happened that day, a situation that turned out satisfactory, or anything that makes you grateful. 

Get the support you need.

This is not the time to be a superhero. No, you don’t need to take care of everything yourself. Yes, it’s okay to ask for help and reach out when you need to. Friends and family are there for just that, and asking for help is nothing to be ashamed of. And this doesn’t just apply to help with tasks, it’s also important to reach out for moral and emotional support. Talk to those you trust, vent and rant and tell your stories. It’s okay to ask for that time, and you will never regret you did.

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