How can I manage holiday stress during menopause?

Staness Jonekos
Health Education
If you practice a few of these Stress-Free Holiday Tips you may just survive your "to-do" list and the holiday season: 
  • Keep expectations reasonable. Planning parties and decorating are stressful tasks. Instead of planning a big holiday party, plan a day to celebrate the holiday at the spa with your closet friends. Keep your schedule open to attend a few parties, not give them. Instead of decorating your home and a Christmas tree, put a lovely wreath on the front door, place a small planted evergreen in the living room and enjoy red candles around the home. 
  • Communicate with your loved ones. Let them know you are going through changes, and that you plan to get some rest this holiday and would appreciate their support. 
  • Limit your alcohol intake. Holiday parties are often centered on drinking. Try to "nurse" one glass of wine for the evening. Remember alcohol is loaded with extra calories. I ask for "water on the rocks with a twist" - it is fun, always gets a reaction, is calorie free and keeps you hydrated.
  • Quiet time. Plan a half hour a day to sit quietly. Find a spot in your home in a comfy chair. Close your eyes, and take long deep breathes. Breathe in thinking of good health and happiness and breathe out stress and frustration. 
  • Eat a healthy diet. Eat more vegetables, whole grains, fruits and low-fat foods. You will have more energy. 
  • Start exercising. Take a 30-minute walk. Not only will you burn calories, you will feel more relaxed. 
  • Manage your time. Cut your to-do list in half this year. 
  • Send e-cards this year. It is fast, easy, free and fun. This will save you time, money, paper and postage. 
  • Have a sense of humor. Dealing with relatives over the holidays can be stressful. If relatives are visiting you for the holiday, ask them to book a hotel for their stay. Keeping your home a sanctuary during your menopause transition is important. If a relative is driving you crazy, try to be cheerful and laugh it off.
  • Keep a budget. Dealing with extra holiday expenses is also extremely stressful. To buffer this a bit, try making homemade gifts or let your loved ones know that this year the gift theme is 'to spend less than $20 per person per gift.' Don't forget, shopping on-line will save time and frustration at the malls.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.