December 23, 2013 in Features

How to defeat holiday stress

Mcclatchy-Tribune
 

Whoever called the holiday season the most wonderful time of the year obviously didn’t have a mile-long shopping list and a house full of people. Getting tired just thinking about it? Here are a few small daily tweaks to help you stay healthy, on track, and on of top of everything this holiday season.

1. Take a steamy shower

You can’t afford to be slowed down by a cold, so steam up in a hot shower. Keeping your nasal passages moist in winter’s dry air prevents the rhinovirus from setting up shop in your nose. Steam is a natural decongestant, and a hot shower loosens mucus in the nasal passages. Add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to the shower for fun; it has antimicrobial properties when inhaled. While you’re at it, start singing. Belting out a song encourages deep breathing, bringing the healing steam deep into your nasal passages.

2. Grab a peppermint

Good reasons to sip or eat this seasonal flavor: peppermint is proven to help ease ill-timed (read: in the dressing room!) digestive issues like nausea and stomach cramps, bring you back from a bout of light-headedness, decrease frustration during crazy holiday traffic, and give you a good afternoon pick-me-up.

3. Get intimate

Intimate activity can help boost your immune system, alleviate pain, and make you feel happier - all things you need to get you through a busy season. Unfortunately, all the hustle and bustle can turn your sex drive cold. Give it a jump-start with this tip: Write down five features you really love about your body. A University of Texas study found that women with more body esteem had higher levels of sexual desire. Focus on physical traits that make you feel beautiful or sexy.

4. Give a little

When you’re used to doing a lot of getting, it’s easy to forget this is the season of giving. Giving money to a good cause makes you feel better than buying a pair of designer jeans - and studies prove it. Plus, you don’t have to be a millionaire to enjoy this karmic boost. The researchers learned that those who gave even $5 to someone else felt measurably better than those who bought themselves a treat instead.


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