I think this post is very relevant at this time of year. Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but the preparation can be stressful. Keep on reading to keep your pre-holiday stress at bay.
Use Essential Oils
They play a key role in aromatherapy; essential oils are concentrated versions of natural oils which are found in some plants.
Essential oils are known to help calm and relax us, the oil can be added to your bathwater, placed on the skin or mixed with hot water in a bowl to create a relaxing vapour. The oils which are known to have relaxing properties are Lavender, Jasmine, Rose and Chamomile.
Try A Face Mask
Pampering always plays a part in making us feel more relaxed, and a face mask is always an easy place to start. You can find a variety of sheet face masks in your local drug store, to soothe stressed-out skin choose one which is infused with aloe vera, or to give your skin an extra glow choose a Vitamin C one.
Alternatively, you could always make a homemade mask. A simple but effective mask can simply be made by mixing half an avocado, a tablespoon of honey and a teaspoon of water. This mask will help to nourish your skin, honey is a natural humectant that moisturises your skin without making your skin oily.
Scrub Away Your Worries
Exfoliating your skin with a body scrubber will buff away any dead skin cells and will leave you with glowing and radiant skin – perfect for your holiday events. Use Susi’s Scrubbers’ Body Scrubber when you have your next shower or bath, and you will leave the bathroom feeling like a new person.
This scrubber would also make a great Christmas gift for a pamper lover or someone who needs reminding to make time to pamper themselves. You can shop the scrubber on Etsy here.
Create A Soothing Atmosphere
Start by lighting a candle, scents can make a big impact on your mood so choose one that you associate with a fond memory, one that reminds you of a spa or a festive one to get you into the Christmas spirit.
Accompany the candle with relaxing sounds, the sound of waves crashing onto the shore or a spa-like soundtrack will help you unwind.
Ensure You Have A Good Hair Day
Apply a hair mask to your hair before washing it, the holiday season means we are applying more heat and product to our hair so extra TLC is needed. A hair mask can help to tame frizz, promote shine and provide moisture.
I would recommend using a hair mask once a week for the best results. A variety of masks are available at the drug store, choose one that is suited to your hair type.
You can also choose between ones you leave on overnight, or if you’re short on time there are hair masks which you can leave on for just fifteen minutes before you shower.
Have A Mani-Pedi
With the hectic holiday season and lots of physical jobs being undertaken, I’m talking wrapping, decorating, cooking; your hands and feet are likely to be neglected.
After your next bath when your nails are softened, cut and file your nails down, and if you are short on time simply applying a clear coat of nail varnish is easy and will make you feel more put together.
After your nails are dry apply nourishing cuticle oil to each nail bed before gently massaging it in, this will promote stronger nails which will grow quicker. For best results do this step last so you don’t have to wash it off and it can soak in and get working.
Make Time For A Massage
Nothing is more relaxing than a massage, whether you go to a salon or get your loved one to grab the massage oil and treat you to a soothing massage. Because carrying those shopping bags around is going to take its toll.
Boost Your Mood With Endorphins
Exercise and other physical activities produce endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that act as a natural painkiller. They help to improve your mood, boost self-esteem and reduce stress and anxiety.
If you’re deficient in producing endorphins you may suffer from side effects such as depression, anxiety, moodiness, aches, addiction, impulsive behaviour and difficulty sleeping. Other ways to boost your mood aside from exercise include eating dark chocolate (a favourite of mine), relaxing in a sauna, dancing and listening to music.
If you are feeling overwhelmed sometimes the best thing to do is to write all your thoughts down in a notebook, then put the notebook down before going back later in the day to reflect on your thoughts.
Consider if your earlier worries are something that still matters now, how we feel in the moment can be different to how we may feel on reflection. It may not always be worries but just general thoughts and ideas are handy to jot down and return to.
Take Some Me Time
When you spend the holiday season shopping retail therapy just won’t cut it. So, instead grab a coffee alone, or go for a winter walk to clear your mind and be alone with your thoughts for a little while.
In addition to the above guide on ways to relax, other things I like to do to help ease the stress of this season is to be organised in the run up to Christmas. I do this by making a list with each family member and friend listed, alongside the presents you plan to buy them and a set budget to stick to.
Time is of the essence at this time of year and wrapping always feel time consuming, so I like to take an entire afternoon or evening and book it out in my diary to wrap all of my gifts – getting it done all in one go works best for me.
When it comes to plans with friends and family remember to be realistic and learn to say no when you have too much on, stop before it becomes too much for you. Me time is important!
I hope these tips helped you to de-stress in the lead up to the holiday season, remember to relax and enjoy. Merry Christmas!