10 tips for finding balance this holiday season

The start of December also marks the start of holiday season festivities for many. Office parties, gatherings with friends, and get-togethers with family can be tons of fun, but add in the other demands of the season, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and out of control.

Don’t worry though, I’ve got you covered with 10 simple tips to help you find the balance you crave for a healthier, happier season.

  1. No, you won’t gain 10 lbs. The average person gains only a pound between Thanksgiving and New Year’s… but this doesn’t mean you can all-out feast throughout the month. Eat mindfully, making healthy choices with the odd indulgence, and stop before you feel full.
  2. Don’t skip meals. Skip a meal and you’ll more than likely make up for it and then some, later.  Arriving at parties hungry usually results in overeating (of all the wrong things).  Strive to eat normally throughout the day making room to nibble only things you love at festive gatherings. Read more.
  3. Drink responsibly. Consuming too much alcohol is never a good idea and a bad hangover could be the least of your worries. Drinking too much can have serious health consequences. Play is safe and drink alcohol in moderation if at all, and don’t even consider getting behind the wheel.
  4. Don’t give up on workouts. The percentage of people who workout regularly in December is the lowest of the year. Instead of giving up on workouts, consider making them shorter, or participating in two or three shorter workouts throughout the day (i.e. walking part of the way to work, running errands on a lunch break, hitting the gym for 30 minutes instead of 60, etc.).
  5. Try to maintain a sleep routine. Most Canadians don’t get enough sleep, and the consequences to their overall health can be immense. Try to stick to your sleep routine over the holiday season, at least as best you can. If you do wind up with a sleep debt, play catch-up on weekends and return to your sleep schedule as quickly as you can.
  6. Beat the blues. The holiday season is often a time of year where many feel stressed and overwhelmed, and it can be a particularly difficult time for those who suffer from anxiety or depression. Read more.
  7. Consider a supplement. Find yourself falling short on quality nutrition over the holiday season? Try to clean up your act, but in the meantime, consider taking a multivitamin.
  8. Don’t let social media drag you down. All those photos of friends and their families munchies cookies, decorating Christmas trees, enjoying wine by the fire, or beaching themselves in Hawaii… don’t let them detract from your own holiday season happiness… whatever the season means to you.
  9. Struggling to find joy in the season? Consider making it a little brighter for others by volunteering your time, donating to a charity, or practicing random acts of kindness. Or, treat yourself without feeling guilty, to a little “me” time. My “me” time often comes in the form of long walks with my dog, working out, or spending time in nature. Do what works for you!
  10. Look ahead to the New Year. Though every day offers a fresh start, many are more motivated to set goals and develop action plans to achieve them, at the start of a new year. Be sure to set realistic goals you can achieve, and factor in a little reward once you do.

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