Want this year’s holidays to be more joyful and less stressful? Try these tips:

1. Recognize how you deal with stress. Determine if you are relying on unhealthy behaviors such as smoking or eating to manage stress.

2. Take care of yourself. This helps keep your mind and body primed to deal with stress. Pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Engage in holiday activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Exercise regularly. Eat healthfully. Make sure you get enough sleep. Make time for yourself. 

3. Manage your finances. Decide how much you can afford to spend on gifts and other items before you go shopping. If possible, donate to a charity in someone’s name, give homemade gifts or start a family gift exchange in place of spending more than you can afford on gifts for everyone.

4. Learn to say no. More times than not, people will understand if you can’t accept a certain project or attend an event. If you say yes only to the things you want to do and should do, you will feel less resentful and less overwhelmed.

Source: West Virginia University

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