From All Hallow’s Eve to New Year’s Eve—Reject the Stress

Halloween anxiety is not what you may think.  It is not a fear of Halloween –BOO!  (Don’t be scared.)  It is an anxiety that occurs with the anticipation of the upcoming Holiday Season.  As soon as Halloween is over, at 11:59pm, retailers across the country mark down the remaining candy and decorations and start to pull out all the stock—Christmas stock—and hire seasonal workers to get all of the holiday decorations up as the race begins to be among the first to be fully decorated to jump-start the spending rush.  After all, “’tis the season to be jolly.”

Staying mentally and emotionally strong and focused will help to reject the stress that is associated with the holiday season.  Preview the following list to get a heads-up on stress.  Add to the list as the week progresses into Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday.  And above all, share the list with family, friends, and colleagues.

  • Make a list of the items that you intend to purchase prior to making the trip to the store.  The list may serve, in part, to keep you focused.
  • Stay clear of “window shopping.”  New items hit the stores in October and become more and more visible as it gets closer and closer to Christmas Day.
  • Proceed with caution with lay-a-way plans.  If you cannot afford it, then re-evaluate whether you should purchase it.  Living beyond our means make for a stressful situation.
  • Keep it simple.  Spending less to impress means having more to store.  You would be surprised at the number of stores that have jumped on the “comparative pricing” bandwagon.  Take advantage of it.
  • Try online shopping to stay away from stressful conditions.  The decorations and music supplied by retailers to get you in the mood also stir up memories that could leave you sad and depressed.
  • Pack away the tear-jerker movies—even the ones with happy endings.  Crying over someone else’s problems only tends to magnify problems that you never knew existed.
  • Re-design your exercise routine.  Add something new or different for the season.  Include a new exercise buddy.
  • Advocate for lighter and more nutritious Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.  Start researching recipes today.  And vow to re-think the guilt desserts—you know the ones that you center your New-Year’s-resolution around.  If nothing else, think moderation.
  • Focus on the reason for the season and shy away from the heavy commercialism.  Look to your family and friends for love and support and your faith for strength and guidance.  Prayer and meditation are excellent ways to reject stress.

–Ain Modeira Baderinwa

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