Iowa Specialty Hospital

Greg's Greetings

December 2, 2019

We are just beginning all of the “busyness” that comes along with the holiday season.  This was quite apparent as Tricia and I took our daughters and their respective husband and boyfriend to the Mall of America for some Christmas shopping a couple weekends ago.  It was a great weekend and we had a ton of fun together!  However, there certainly were a lot of people already in full Christmas shopping mode (much like we were) and patience needed to be had.

Another holiday season is upon us.  Along with all of the fun of enjoying time with family there are some not so enjoyable things that come this time of year such as stress, disappointment, emotional eating and overindulgence.    According to Psychology Today, here are some things we can do this holiday season to not just survive but thrive this season:

1.    Keep exercise essential.  This can help reduce stress, improve mood and concentration and combats depression.  (and maybe gets you some additional points in our Wellness Program).

2.    Get in touch with gratitude.  Gratitude also protects your brain from stress and depression.  You should ponder the question, “What am I grateful for?”

3.    Protect your sleep.  Chronic sleeplessness and poor sleep mess with people’s emotional and physical health.  Lack of sleep leads to weight gain, additional stress, and irritability.

4.    Feel (don’t eat or drink) your feelings.  This time of year can bring up strong feelings.  If you find yourself reaching for something to eat or drink in response to a difficult feeling, try to make sense of what’s going on instead.

5.    Give yourself the present.  Don’t get so wrapped up in planning the best holiday experience that you lose the ability to experience good moments that happen in the present.

Although the old saying, “It is better to give than to receive” is true in many circumstances, let’s give ourselves permission to take care of ourselves and one another.

Until next time……

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