'Tis the season! While the holidays are synonymous with peace, love and joy for many who celebrate, the holiday season can be filled with discomfort. According to the national "Beating the Holiday Burn" survey of 2,000 Americans 18 and older, from long to-do lists to disagreements with loved ones to overeating, 88 percent of respondents noted they feel stressed when celebrating the holidays.
To help you make the most of this holiday season, family therapist and author, Tom Kersting, recommends the following tips:
1. Seek Silence
Oh, silent night! With the hustle and bustle of the season, surrounding noises can create added anxiety. Throughout the season, make an effort to disconnect from the outside world and, instead, reconnect with your inside world. Find a quiet space where you can think and evaluate without the world getting in the way. When silence is hard to come by, a pair of noise-cancelling headphones can go a long way in achieving the calm that silence brings.
2. Practice Mindful Eating
In addition to the unease we may feel, the foods we consume, whether as a result of that stress or our desire to indulge, can have a direct effect on how we feel during the holidays. The season is often filled with fatty and fried foods and alcohol, all of which are triggers of heartburn. While avoiding these foods altogether can be difficult, treating heartburn isn't. For frequent heartburn sufferers*, opt for store brand Omeprazole ODT†, the first and only orally dissolving form of omeprazole, the No. 1 selling PPI ingredient in heartburn treatment**. Find it at retailers nationwide under each store's brand label.
3. Make a Personal Appointment
The season is often packed with busy schedules and a slew of appointments; however, how often do we make an appointment with ourselves? Checking in with yourself is one of the most important things you can do to alleviate stress. All you need is 10 to 15 minutes per day when you can practice meditation or visualization. Go ahead, get out your appointment book and add yourself in there.
4. Exercise Moderately
You don't need to spend hours at the gym to feel the positive effects of physical activity. Despite the many demands on schedules around the holidays, setting aside even just 30 minutes of light cardio several times per week can help alleviate stress. Aerobic exercise is scientifically proven to be one of the most important prescriptions for treating stress and anxiety.
5. Step into Someone Else's Shoes
Tensions can be high during the season, especially when you're forced to spend time with loved ones with whom you don't always get along. Before you let circumstances get the best of you, take a breath to think about the "why" behind their actions. Perhaps their misguided comments or actions are coming from a place of love or humor. Instead of letting these comments wreak havoc on your day, take the high road and consciously choose not to give in to negative feelings.
6. Unplug the Devices
Too much screen time and social media means an information overload — and a lot of this information can be stress-inducing. Make it a priority to turn down the device a lot more this holiday season and instead connect with loved ones.
While stress can be inevitable, keeping these tips in mind can help alleviate the discomfort and allow you to enjoy all the holiday season has to offer. For more information, visit dissolveyourheartburn.com.
* Frequent heartburn occurs 2 or more days a week
** This product is not intended for immediate relief; it may take 1-4 days for full effect.
† Omeprazole Delayed Release Orally Disintegrating Tablets 20 mg. This product is a 14-day treatment program that is not to be repeated for four months. It should not be used all season unless directed by your doctor.