As the Holiday Season Approaches, ValueOptions Offers Tips for Reducing Stress
NORFOLK, Va., Nov. 26, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — With the holidays rapidly approaching, ValueOptions(®), Inc., a health improvement company specializing in mental and emotional wellbeing and recovery, recognizes that the season synonymous with cheer is also the busiest time of the year. Between traveling to see family, buying presents, and the onslaught of events, many of us are left totally drained by January.
But just because the holidays are packed, doesn’t mean you’re doomed to two months of non-stop stress. Here are some ways to help ensure the holidays are a time of merriment instead of mayhem:
-- Take an inventory of your holiday traditions to make sure they're practical--or even enjoyable! If your family groans at the thought of braving the cold at the town Thanksgiving parade, boot it from the activity list (and free up an evening to drink cocoa by the fire). -- 'Tis the season to overspend! Setting a budget ahead of time will help you cut back on impulsive purchases. If you find yourself wincing at the number of people on your gift list, give smaller presents like baked goods or homemade crafts, or suggest a group gift exchange game. -- Set limits of what you take on. If you're hosting Thanksgiving dinner, ask another relative to organize the holiday gift exchange. If you find that you're the default activities director, delegate tasks to attendees to cut back on work. -- Loved ones are one of the best parts about the holidays, but too much togetherness can send your stress levels through the roof. If the thought of staying overnight in a crowded relative's house is enough to make you want to hide out until St. Patrick's Day, nab a room in a nearby hotel--that way, you can have your own quiet space once family time is done for the day. -- Be picky with your party invitations! Instead of trying to cram in every festivity you're invited to, decide which celebrations are most important to you, and send your regrets to the others. You'll enjoy the ones you do attend that much more. -- Make the holidays your own by coming up with at least one activity that you know you'll enjoy: grab a group of friends for a tour of the holiday lights, or get into the real spirit of the season by volunteering at a soup kitchen or toy drive.
And if you’re still overwhelmed by seasonal obligations, don’t be afraid to enlist professional help. Rich Paul, ValueOptions Senior Vice President, Customer and Product Strategy Officer, suggests enlisting the help of the benefits you already have in place through your employer: “Many workplaces offer employee assistance programs where you can speak with a counselor about seasonal stress–some programs can even help make you with practical arrangements like finding a pet sitter or booking hotels. Find out what your benefits are and how you can access them.”
For more ways to keep your holidays stress-free, visit http://valueoptions.com/coping-with-holiday-stress.
ValueOptions is a health improvement company that serves more than 32 million individuals. On behalf of employers, health plans and government agencies, we manage innovative programs and solutions that directly address the challenges our health care system faces today. A national leader in the fields of mental and emotional wellbeing, recovery and resilience, employee assistance, and wellness, ValueOptions helps people make the difficult life changes needed to be healthier and more productive. With offices nationwide and a network of more than 130,000 provider locations, ValueOptions helps people take important steps in the right direction. We help them live their lives to the fullest potential. Visit www.valueoptions.com for more information.