Tackling Holiday Stress in Healthier Ways

Edited by Paul Alexander

Last updated December 8, 2016

Thanksgiving is over, and Christmas, Hanukkah, and the New Year are quickly approaching. It can be easy to get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of it all and stress yourself out. However, putting this kind of pressure on yourself doesn’t help anyone, least of all your recovery. Stress can be a major trigger for relapse and also take a toll on your mental health and motivation.

Make the choice to keep stress in check this year, starting with these recommendations:

  • Stick to a schedule

Make it a point to try to continue your normal routine while adding in special events and activities. This will help you to avoid becoming overbooked as well as having large gaps of unstructured time where boredom or temptation could set in.

  • Be selective with invites

Remember, you don’t have to accept every invite you receive.  It is okay to politely decline, especially if you know there will be drinking involved, you already have other plans, or you just need a break.

  • Stay active but don’t forget to rest

Get at least 30 minutes of exercise in each day to combat stress and boost your mood. Mix things up by going to the gym, riding your bike, doing Zumba, or engaging in another activity you enjoy. Also, make sure you are getting plenty of sleep each night to allow your body to recover and recharge.

  • Meditate

Meditating can be done virtually anywhere, any time. Whether you have 3 minutes or 30 minutes, take a break to calm your body and mind. Do this as many times a day as you need to.

  • Listen to your body

Recognize when tension is starting to build, you are feeling stressed out, or you are becoming exhausted. Step back and give yourself a break. Take a night off, read a book, listen to music, or relax with someone who makes you laugh. Make your well-being a priority.

Northbound supports clients in finding balance between life in recovery, their career, their family, and other responsibilities. With a wide range of treatment programs and structured aftercare, clients can learn to thrive in recovery while reducing risk of relapse.

Are you concerned about your recovery over the holidays? Call Northbound today to learn about outpatient care and support services.

Article Reviewed by Paul Alexander

Paul AlexanderPaul Alexander is the founder and CEO of Northbound Treatment. He received his Certified Addiction Treatment Specialist training at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, CA, and was awarded Outstanding Alumni Service Award in 2002. Paul holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology, Law and Society, Summa Cum Laude, from University of California, Irvine, and a Juris Doctorate degree from Loyola Law School of Los Angeles. He believes wholeheartedly in transformational leadership, organizational health and effective, fully integrated substance use disorder treatment.


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