It’s the most wonderful time of the year, when we joyously celebrate with family and friends, and focus on the… wait, did we turn the oven off? Is that silver bells we hear, or the fire alarm? Whose idea was it to bake sixteen dozen cookies for the kids’ school by tomorrow morning? …Ours? Are we crazy? Why do we sign up for this every year?
Let’s face it: the holidays are hardcore. ’Tis the season to cook, clean, buy, decorate, and socialize at a frantic pace, while never feeling perfect enough. Holiday stress affects our overall health, including our skin. So here’s our present to you: five tips to help you manage holiday stress and feel festive.
…We were going to get you one of those reindeer-antler headbands, but these reminders are more practical, and easier to wrap up.
1. Eat, Drink, and be Merry
What’s your favorite holiday treat? Is it eggnog? Tamales? Champagne? Fruitcake (really)? Go ahead, indulge. But practice portion control; overdoing it with food and alcohol promotes inflammation, which in turn stresses your digestion and compromises your immune system. And if you suffer from a chronic skin condition like eczema, a flare-up is almost inevitable. So even during the holidays, include fiber, clean protein, and healthy fats in your diet. Probiotics help keep your gut in balance too, and be sure to drink lots of water. Your skin (and your liver, and your tummy, and your everything) will thank you.
Pro tip: Apply Blue Star Ointment to eczema-affected skin as soon you feel “The Itch that Stole Christmas” coming on, and stop flare-ups before they happen!
2. Take a long winter’s nap.
Night-time parties and present-wrapping take a toll. Sleep deprivation is serious, playing a role in holiday weight gain and leading to roller-coaster moods, and it can even make driving more dangerous. With all the shopping and errand-running we do during the holidays, who wants to fall asleep at the wheel? Instead, practice good sleep habits, like going to bed at roughly the same time, turning off devices when it’s time to relax, and taking it easy on late-night activity.
Pro tip: Smooth a little Blue Star Ointment on patches of dry skin at bedtime, and wake up to a smoother you.
3. Sometimes a “no” saves your ho-ho-ho.
We all want to show our holiday spirit and do our part. It’s tempting to volunteer for every task, say yes to every event, and try to live up to every obligation. But over-committing yourself is a fool-proof recipe for burnout! It’s not just OK to say no, it’s necessary for self-care. Setting boundaries conserves your energy, too, so that you’ll be truly present for those people and special occasions you care most about!
4. Jingle-Bell Rock Out!
Did you know that dancing is the ideal stress reliever? Shaking your groove thing burns off extra calories and improves your overall fitness, and studies show that music eases many areas of a stressed-out brain. Giggling at your friends’ ridiculous moves (and your own) boosts feel-good chemicals, too! That contagious well-being that you experience while having fun with others? It may even increase your lifespan. If you’re not into shaking a leg, a nice brisk walk with your dog or your kids can bust stress, too.
Pro tip: Did your feet get sweaty while you got busy? Apply Blue Star Ointment after a dance party or other workout, or after a bath or shower, to ward off party-pooping Athlete’s Foot!
5. Take a breather. Literally.
When the pressures of merrymaking (and making others merry) feel overwhelming, find a quiet place, sit still, and focus your attention on your breathing. Medical research finds that conscious breathing slows your heart rate, lowers your blood pressure, boosts your immune system, and quiets your mind. You don’t have to chant. You don’t have to empty all thoughts from your mind, or contort yourself into a pretzel. Just two to three minutes of focused breathing can help you feel calm and ready to celebrate.
Most importantly, set time aside during your hectic schedule to observe the joyful moments. Stop and admire the lights. Watch your kids’ faces as they decorate cookies. Find the humor in the mishaps. Make a list – not of chores or gifts to buy, but of people, experiences, and events that make you feel happy and grateful.
Blue Star Ointment is grateful for holiday fun, decking the halls, cookies, and for our customers. Since 1920, we’ve worked hard to protect your skin from stress, holiday or otherwise. We look forward to serving you and your family for at least another 95 years. Be of good cheer, and have yourselves a safe, fun, and blessed holiday season!
#BlueStarOintment #WinterItchRelief #StressFreeHolidays