Originally published in Loose Lips Magazine, on December 23, 2018 by Brittany Tiplady
The weather outside is frightful and so is your schedule, anxiety, and bank account.
It’s a stressful time of year for everyone and in an age of anxiety, the holidays can certainly be an added trigger. We spoke to leading psychologist Dr. Khush Amaria PhD, CPsych, an expert in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and a Clinical Director of the MindBeacon Group, about some easy-to-use tactics to help mitigate the holiday stress for you and your loved ones.
Figure out the rules you have for yourself.
“If the holidays are a stressful time for someone, I would guess that that person has a lot of built-in ‘should’ statements around this time. And that can be everything from ‘I should buy the perfect gift’ and ‘I should host the perfect holiday party,’ and I ‘should have the house perfectly clean.'”
Dr. Amaria suggests identifying what those stressors are as the first step. And then individuals can sort out what is a reasonable priority for them.
“It’s okay to decide you don’t have to do everything, and you don’t have to do everything perfectly and you don’t have to do everything exactly how it has been done in past years. Figure out your own rules as a way to challenge your ‘should’ statements.”