Every Day Choices and Holiday Stress

11-01-2017Counselor's Corner

The wonderful world that God created for us to live in may not seem so wonderful at stressful times in our lives.  Holiday times like Thanksgiving and Christmas quite often involve extra activities at school, parties at home and more family gatherings than normal. This can result in additional stress for families, staff and kids alike.

Added Stress can alter our enjoyment level for activities, and we need to be aware of things that can exacerbate stress like deaths, accidents, divorce, or family illness. Quite often we encourage children to make the best choices, and use of time, but we need to set the example as adults. Different and wonderful things happen during each holiday to show us nature’s beauty. Many special activities are planned during this season that can trigger both pleasant and unpleasant feelings.

One way to add “Joy” back into your life is to bring happiness to someone else! Research shows that doing small acts of kindnesscan be a great stress reducer, no matter how the other person reacts. Some examples: are a small note, a smile, a simple thank you, a gentle handshake, kiss, pat on the back, or a small gift.  Offering to help out in the classroom or volunteer for an event in the community is truly a gift of time and can significantly help others. If you are in need of extra help, now is the season to ask for and let others help you too.

Even if you are feeling a little guilt, overwhelmed or anger at God, he has assured us he will help us through hard times no matter what. Have you ever felt overwhelmed by all the requests/events you have during this season? A simple suggestion is to list them all and then decide which ones can be eliminated or put off until later. Plan carefully to eliminate being overwhelmed, because that is an excellent stress reliever, as well as listening to soft music, and prayer. An activity that has proven health benefits is personal journal writing each and every day.  Include topics like what are you happy about or what are you’re grateful for in your daily life. It’s important to start your day positive and end it on a positive note. Maximize your free time for rest, relaxation and rejuvenation.

Spreading love is also another suggestion that can be done in the simplest ways like praying, helping a friend or colleague, or welcoming a new family and student to our school. God commands us to Spread love wherever we go at home, in the community and to those in the military. It is an easy choice to make during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season.  Many families have holiday traditions, and these activities are yearly events. Do some of your favorite things at Christmas, and maybe introduce something new to the family this year.  

Finally, make sure you include activities that kids will remember as being fun family activities like trips, singing, board games, movies or videos.  Let’s be the best person we can be and remember that God has good things in store for us next year.