Manage Anxiety This Holiday Season

The holidays are usually a time for happy togetherness, but too often, they also cause intense anxiety. Everything from pressure to make the season perfect for your loved ones to facing the holidays after losing someone close to you can cause anxiety to take center stage this time of year. If you experience severe anxiety, consider getting emergency care, particularly if you feel like you could harm yourself . In addition to talking to your physician about your symptoms, try these strategies for managing stress during the holiday season:

Focus on Important Traditions
As life changes and evolves for you, it is okay for your holiday traditions to follow suit. Instead of trying to replicate the same celebrations year after year, decide with your family which traditions are important to you to keep, and which ones you can leave as memories. For instance, if you love getting together to bake cookies with your cousins but are overwhelmed at the thought of hosting a post-Thanksgiving brunch, remove the stress of the brunch and focus on the cookie tradition. This allows you to make your holiday season more manageable without compromising on the things that matter to you.

Make Time for Relaxation
Relaxing should be part of the holidays, so make sure you get some time to just enjoy the season. Don’t overschedule yourself, and when you host a gathering, make sure you get time to enjoy it. Buy premade food, allow other people to bring dishes, and otherwise share the burden so that you get to stop and enjoy everything you’ve worked hard to arrange. Make time for yourself every day to focus on the things that are important to you.

Ask for Help
Holiday planning often falls on the shoulders of a few people in most families, so ask for help when you need it. Many people in your family may be willing to help but aren’t sure how to get involved. Be specific about the kind of support you need so people can give it to you.

Emergency care is available at Regional Medical Center of San Jose around the clock throughout the holiday season. We can also provide physician referrals to providers who can help you manage anxiety. Find out more about our hospital in San Jose by calling (888) 762-8881.

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