Avoid a Burnout this Holiday Season

We are counting down the days to the most wonderful time of the year—and often the most stressful. A rewarding part of my job is helping patients navigate this historically hectic season. Certain tips in particular have proven to help them make December as smooth sailing as it can be and avoid a holiday burnout.

Related Content
How to Use Your Senses to Keep Your Resolution

Make and stick to your budget. Budgeting is no easy task. But I would encourage everyone, especially those who don’t usually budget, to exercise financial discretion during the holidays. Setting up a maximum budget, allocating money for gifts and mailing or gift card fees, and writing it all down can help you visually set your maximum budget. Who wants to be in debt once the New Year dawns?

Continue your healthy routines. The holiday season is filled with mocha lattes, peppermint chocolate and a lot of candy canes. It’s important to remember one can enjoy the holiday season without avoiding exercise and healthy eating patterns. This makes way for a little indulgence during the holiday season.

Practice your spirituality. Whatever your spiritual preference, religion or sense of self is, it’s important to turn inwards from time to time. That becomes even more critical during a particularly stressful season because it helps balance the chaos. It can also create a much-needed safe haven during the inevitably stressful time.

Don’t be afraid to say no. It’s common for people to feel pressured to say “yes” and ignore their stress level. This is especially true when it comes to deadlines at work and other social demands during the holiday seasons. Setting firm boundaries can go a long way as long as they are set in a productive and professional manner. Saying “no” is a great way to self-check and prevent a burnout.

Strengthen social connections. One of the most exciting things about the holiday season is sharing love for family and friends by way of gifts, dinner, drinks and quality time. It’s also an opportunity to fortify old relationships by letting people know you’ve been thinking about them or would like to spend some time with them. Solid relationships give us a sense of purpose even well after the holiday season. ‘Tis the season of giving for a reason!

dr. uruj kamal

dr. uruj kamal

Dr. Uruj Kamal is Chief Resident of Adult Outpatient Psychiatry at Baystate Medical Center-University of Massachusetts Medical School. A Stony Brook native, she enjoys combining her knowledge of mental health with healthy living. Dr. Kamal has a special interest in outpatient adult psychiatry.