coping with holiday stress

The holidays can be a stressful time for anyone, but for college students, it can be especially difficult to cope with the added pressures of finals, family gatherings and financial concerns. Here are a few tips to help you cope with the stress and make the most of this special time.

Make a Plan

The holidays can be a busy time, so make a plan for how you will manage your time. If you everyday schedule is filled to the brim with schoolwork, household chores and a full-time job, finding time to attend Christmas parties and family get-togethers may be a challenge. Plan ahead, such as setting specific dates for Christmas shopping, attending parties or decorating your home. Make a list of things you need to do to help yourself stay organized and avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Set Realistic Expectations

The holiday season is a time for joy, family and friends. However, it can also be a time of stress and anxiety. It’s important to set realistic expectations for yourself and others during this time. Remember that you don’t have to do everything and that it is ok to say no. Take some time for yourself and enjoy the simple things. Be patient with others and remember that they may be going through their own stress. Most importantly, enjoy the time you spend with the people you care about.

Don’t Overspend

The end of the year can be a very expensive time with all the gifts, parties and travel. One way to avoid overspending is to set a budget and stick to it. Decide how much you can afford to spend on gifts, food and other expenses and then stick to that amount. Another way to save money is to shop for gifts online or at discount stores. If you’re crafty, you can also make your own gifts. Whatever you do, don’t go into debt trying to have the perfect holiday.

Avoid Conflict

The holidays should be filled with good cheer. It’s also a time when old conflicts and grudges can resurface when seeing people you haven’t been around in a while. It’s important to be aware of how your words and actions might be interpreted and to avoid potential conflicts. If someone says or does something that bothers you, try to address the issue in a calm and respectful way. If things get too heated, it’s always best to walk away and take a break. Being mindful and keeping the peace can allow you to enjoy the holiday season to the fullest.

Stay Healthy

It can be tempting to overindulge in delicious food and drink during the holiday season. Here are a few tips for staying healthy during the holiday season:

  • Avoid overeating by eating small meals throughout the day
  • Choose healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables and avoid processed foods
  • Drink plenty of water and avoid sugary drinks like soda or pasteurized juice
  • Get plenty of exercise, even if it’s just a brisk walk
  • Take a break from the festivities and get some rest

Take a Break from Technology

Some people find that taking a break from technology helps them focus on what’s important and allows them to truly relax and enjoy the holiday season. For many people, this includes taking a break from technology. This can mean unplugging from devices such as cell phones, laptops and televisions, and spending time enjoying activities such as talking, playing games and spending time outdoors.

Seek Support

It’s not uncommon for the holiday season to be a difficult time for many people. It can be especially hard to cope if you’re feeling lonely or struggling with mental health issues. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s important to reach out for support. There are many people who can help you through this time, including friends, family and mental health professionals. You can also find support through online communities or support groups. Whatever you do, don’t try to cope with these feelings on your own or with potentially unhealthy outlets.

Seek Academic Advisement This Holiday Season and Beyond

At the St. Louis College of Health Careers, we are committed to equipping students with the tools they need to be successful.

If you find yourself overwhelmed with schoolwork or need advice on how to build your career, our devoted staff and faculty members are here to mentor you throughout your academic journey.

To receive personalized mentorship and access our online tools and academic resources, reach out to a mentor via the student portal or speak directly to your academic advisor.

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