1. Start With a Vision - Start your holiday with a clear vision of how you would like it to go. Share your visions and thoughts with your family and friends and ask for their input as well.
2. Set Goals and Prioritize – Its okay to say “no” sometimes. Saying yes when you should say no can sometimes leave you feeling overwhelmed. Family, friends and colleagues should understand if you can't attend every party or participate in every activity.
3. Organize and Simplify – Try to find ways to organize you activities and create a “to-do” list so you can check things off as you get them accomplished to help you feel more organized and productive during the holiday season.
4. Take Care of “You”– You must find time to take care of yourself - physically, mentally and spiritually. Go for a walk, get enough sleep, read inspiring literature, spend time with close friends to talk and laugh, listen to music, go outdoors, spend some quiet time alone, meditate, and try to be tobacco free.
5. Think Safety – Whether you are traveling long distances, hanging lights, or simply walking in a busy parking lot, it’s important to pay extra attention to the safety of you and your family around the holidays.
6. Try to Stay Financially Fit - We are all responsible for our own happiness and health during the holidays. Whether or not you have a good holiday is a function of your decisions and not the conditions around you. Try to make realistic financial commitments and time commitments that you can keep this holiday season.
7. Try to Eat Well – There are a few things that you can do to keep things under control: Limit your portions, don’t go to a party hungry; steer clear of items high in fats; watch out for high calorie foods and beverages. Drink lots of water! Sample and taste new things, but try not to over-do it!
8. Stay Active - Find opportunities to stay active to help you feel better, more energized, focused and fit for the demands of the season.
9. Get Connected – Encourage those you love to help you create meaningful traditions and routines that can be part of future holidays. Get in touch with extended family and old friends.
10. Explore New Experiences but Set Limits - Trying something new – especially a refreshing exercise, like Tai Chi. It is a great way to keep fit, relieve stress, and meet new friends this holiday season. Read a new book, write in a journal, visit a library, study something new, and try to watch less TV.
11. Give - Commit random acts of kindness. Small gestures (that don’t cost anything except for your time) can make a huge difference in someone’s life. Other things you can do: volunteer, visit the elderly, read to a child, or donate clothes, toys, and food to a needy family.
12. Have Fun - Play, dance, sing, laugh, and enjoy. Experience the joy, excitement and wonder of the holiday season. You are never too old to act like a kid once in a while!
- submitted by Pat Dobbins, Hendry-Glades Health Department