Diabetes Blogs

The Holidays Are Here: Thrive or Survive?

Well folks, the holidays are here, and all of our preparations, stress and expectations are about to reach their ultimate manifestations as Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Years come and go.

Are you ready?

Over the last few months, I’ve written several posts pertaining to managing the stress of the holidays and staying sane amidst the general ruckus.

Now, as we’re really in the thick of it, this is where the proverbial rubber hits the road and we’re intensely tested—sometimes to our limits of tolerance.

  • When those mountains of desserts are wheeled before your eyes, what will you do? How will you control your desire to just forget about your diabetes and dive headlong into those piles of carbohydrates?
  • When your brother-in-law goads you into an argument about politics after dinner, will you keep your cool and not take his bait?
  • When the alcohol is flowing like a river, how will you temper your proclivities and adhere to your one-drink-per-day policy that really works for you?
  • When you want to pull your hair out and run away and hide? How will you cope with those intense feelings?

These are just several examples of the ways that the holidays can tax us, and I’m sure you can think of hundreds of other scenarios in which the holidays push your buttons---be it your diet button, your stress button or your I-can’t-take-this-anymore button.

How will you sail through it all unharmed?

In my previous posts, I’ve written about conscious breathing, positive self-talk, being in the present, delegation of tasks, alternative forms of gift-giving, the control of your perceptions, and the avoidance of stress whenever possible (and no, you probably can’t call your mother-in-law at the last minute and tell her not to come).

Whatever tactics or techniques you feel drawn to, just remember to use them! Conscious breathing is inexpensive and always available at a moment’s notice. Meanwhile, delegating tasks to others is also an easy way to take some weight off your shoulders at times of increased stress.

These are days of the year when we’re supposed to have fun, spend time with family and friends, be thankful for our many gifts, and tie a festive and grateful ribbon around the year as it comes to a close.

Enjoy yourself, practice moderation when necessary, and use the tools you have at your disposal to stay sane, calm, happy and healthy.

Happy holidays, and many blessings to you and yours, now and always. 

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