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Relax: How to Reduce Stress This Holiday Season

The holidays are meant to be a time of celebration, but for many, this season can seem like an overwhelming marathon of dinners and family functions. Though it might seem like stress is just an inevitable part of the holiday season, accepting this stress can actually be bad for your health. Prolonged stress can have a negative mental and physical impact—and can even override the benefits of healthy eating. But it doesn’t have to be this way! Replace holiday stress with holiday spirit with the relaxation techniques below.

Incorporate Yoga into Your Routine
Whether you’re looking for a way to start your morning on the right foot or just need a mid-day boost, yoga is a great way to relax your body and mind. While standing poses can energize your body and help you feel more powerful, seated poses can help create a sense of calm. Try child's pose or legs-up-the-wall if you want to stretch and relax.

Practice Breathing Exercises When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed
Inhale. Exhale. Sometimes, you just need to breathe. Benefits of full, deep breathing include relaxation, reduction of tension, and lower levels of stress. Taking the time to stop and breathe can help you relax and regain focus, whether it's a breathing exercise or just simple inhaling and exhaling.

Gain a New Perspective with Meditation
Meditation is a relaxation practice that is thousands of years old. During meditation, the key is to clear your mind of thoughts that could be causing you stress. Meditation has a host of health benefits, including giving you a renewed sense of peace and balance. If you’re new to the practice, check out the many types of meditation and see what works best for you.

Keep a Gratitude Journal to Track Positive Moments
You can reduce stress and enhance your self-esteem as well as empathy by focusing on the positive aspects of your life. What do you love about your life? Who are you grateful to have as a friend or family member? Stress less and smile more with gratitude journaling.

 

What stress reduction techniques do you rely on to reduce stress? Have anything to add to our list? Let us know in the comments below!

http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2016/09/27/494922257/chill-out-stress-can-override-benefits-of-healthy-eating
http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/meditation/in-depth/meditation/art-20045858
http://www.forbes.com/sites/amymorin/2014/11/23/7-scientifically-proven-benefits-of-gratitude-that-will-motivate-you-to-give-thanks-year-round/#5a8f9e996800
http://www.webmd.com/balance/stress-management/tc/stress-management-breathing-exercises-topic-overview
http://www.juiceplus.com/us/en/jpcommunity.read.html/en/2016/9/five-ways-to-start-your-day-on-the-right-foot.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/06/10-yoga-poses-for-stress-_n_3000801.html

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