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The Holidays are Crazy-Making. Here’s How to De-Stress.


Dreading the most wonderful time of the year? These holiday stress tips are quick, simple, and inexpensive ways to preserve your sanity (and, dare we say it, have fun?) this holiday season.

Like an incoming tornado, the holidays are all about preparedness. In the weeks and months before it hits, it’s time to batten down the hatches and get your de-stressing routine down pat, so that by the time the extended family arrives, your pulse is calm, your breaths are deep, and your mind is clear. Your guide to managing holiday stress is here. Godspeed.


A room with a view

Have a spare bedroom, a garden, or even a local bench you can escape to? Finding a place of solitude during the chaos of the holiday season can be saving grace when pushy relatives or screaming children threaten your peace. Before holiday season begins, find a place that’s just yours, and try to set some boundaries around keeping it that way. A separate space can be a great way to manage holiday stress.


Wake up on the right side of the bed

One way to prepare for busy days is to make your mornings work for you. This stretch can increase blood flow, focus, and alertness seconds after you roll out of bed. 

Reach your hands to your toes (bending your knees if necessary) for 10 seconds. 

Then, spread your legs out and touch your hands to your feet for 5 seconds each. 

Lastly, stand up straight and reach your hands toward each other behind your back for 10 seconds, with one hand grabbing the wrist of the other.

Think inside the box

Try box breathing to cool down your holiday stress. Inhale for a count of 4, hold for 4, release for 4, and hold for 4. This signals to your nervous system that it’s safe to calm down. This tip for managing holiday stress also works at night when you're trying to fall asleep.


Release the waterworks

Need a good cry? Many people find holotropic breathwork to be excellent for accessing emotions (and it's great for managing holiday stress!). Simply breathe into your stomach, bring the air up to your chest, and release. Repeat for 30 seconds. Warning: this type of breathing can be intense, so if you want to breathe for longer periods of time, seek out a local practitioner.

Dream for more chill

Need to add some quality sleep to your jam-packed days? Dream is your go-to nighttime ritual, especially during a crazy holiday season. It's clinically shown to improve your sleep, and will leave you energized to take on whatever the day throws at you. Translation: better sleep, less holiday stress.


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