Tag Archives: Stress

Stress Less Around The Christmas Season.

Stress Less Around The Christmas Season

When we think about it; if it was any other time of the year and we were panicking about getting someone a gift or spending time with a friend, we would say to each other, “it’s only one day!” but when it comes to Christmas, the majority of us go into meltdown mode to make sure it’s the perfect time of the year. I wanted to discuss four pieces of advice that I tell myself if I start panicking about the holiday season.

  1. Having the perfect wrapping paper is not the most important part of the gift.

Listen, this used to be me. I had to have the prettiest wrapping paper and it all had to be the same type. I would get the matching tags and I would have to go back to the supermarket numerous times because I was always running out. If it was colourful, I was in but if it was covered in glitter, I HAD to have it. If we actually think about it for one minute; that wrapping paper is going to be admired for maximum 30 seconds and ripped apart (unless you are Monica, then you slowly unwrap it and iron it for later, but how many of us are doing that with each gift?). That’s it, that’s all that happens and it more than likely ends up in a bin at the end of the day. All that extra money on the glitter, the colourful pattern, it’s going in the bin and because the majority of that type of paper isn’t recycled, it’s just going to sit for years unable to decompose. 

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I’m not trying to guilt anyone, I promise I’m not, but once you really think about where that wrapping paper is going and what it’s being used for, something just clicks. It clicks that we don’t need to be really fancy; last year I used brown wrapping paper and I used regular string and it gave the present a minimalist feel. This year, I’m going to add ribbon to the present instead and that means that the paper will be recyclable, the tape I use is also recyclable and the receivers can use the ribbons afterwards if they want. This doesn’t apply to only Christmas, this is all year round and it means that you won’t have to rush round the shops looking for fancy birthday paper because you’ll have left over brown paper from Christmas and maybe a ribbon or two.

2) If you can’t attend every single event, people WILL understand.

Christmas and December in general in expensive; it’s the busiest time of the year and we want to gift our friends and family with presents that they will love. That comes at a cost and you still have to pay all your regular bills, so going out for a few nights over the month for dinner would be absolutely fine any other time of the year but around December, it’s a little harder and it can be hard to admit that to friends and family. You may want to go out and still catch-up over your monthly pizza night or have that weekly pub night, but if you can’t afford to or you have family plans, the people around you will understand. It’s a busy time of the time and you’re having to balance everything you would normally do as well as planning your Christmas and scheduling your family time around your work schedule (and your own family’s schedule). A catch up over a coffee on your lunch break can be just as effective or inviting a friend over for a home cooked meal can be just as comforting. These are things we should be doing all year around but I believe it’s so important to emphasize that if you can’t go out as often as you used to or you feel like you’ve committed to so many events, it’s okay if you can’t go to everything, and those that truly care about you will one hundred percent understand.

3) Quality over quantity is more important.

This has been a really important part of my Christmas gifting experience especially over the last few years and with my on-going journey with minimalism (or at least my very very slow journey with minimalism) I treat my present buying the way I want to be treated with gift giving. As much as fifty presents would love on the sofa on the morning of Christmas, am I going to get around to use all fifty? I absolutely love surprises and I love surprising people especially with gifts, and I believe the reason why I’m so good at gifts is because I do research. One of my favourite things to do throughout school and college was the research part of an assignment and it has stayed with me. Of course, if you ask someone what they want and they tell you; well you have hit the jackpot and you know exactly what they want, but we all have those people in our lives that we ask what they want for Christmas and they either say “Oh nothing, I don’t need anything” or “I don’t know, I’ll let you know” and they never let you know.

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I would rather buy fewer presents that I either know the person will love or is higher quality than buying five smaller presents. I think this is something that parents deal with quite a lot and especially now that almost everything is documented on social media; the living room is covered in presents or there was one woman a few years ago I remember being interviewed on TV who bought her children something outrageous like three hundred presents! I can’t imagine what it’s like as a parent because I’m not one yet but I can imagine that you want to give your children the most magical Christmas. You want them to go back to school and tell them about the amazing time they had when they were off on holidays and you want them to fit in with all their friends. Where does it stop though? Do you get yourself in debt over it? Do you push yourself so far that it means the first half of the year you’re struggling to get back on track over ONE DAY? Children might not understand the quality of a gift but I believe if it’s taught to them at a young age, they will appreciate it so much more. (I’m saying this as a non-parent but this is how I want to raise my future children. At least I have a plan right?)

4) At the end of the day, it’s ONE DAY.

Is it worth it to completely stress, stretch your budget to harm you for the next year coming and make everything perfect for ONE DAY out of the year? I can give you the answer right now and I can tell you it’s a firm no. We have another 364 days to buy gifts for each other, to show each other how we feel and show our appreciation for one another; the pressure for this one day has completely taken over on an entire new level and instead of looking forward to Christmas, it’s sad that so many don’t love the build up and the excitement of it all because all they see is the pressure to be perfect. 

As always, thank you so much for reading today’s post, I know it was a long one but it’s always a good excuse to make a cup of tea beforehand, right? If you have any feedback; please let me know in the comments, over on my Instagram or over on my Twitter. Also, I love Christmas themed posts, so if you have one that you think I would enjoy, let me know! Have a great week! ❤️

SS: Sunday Saves (#87) Stress.

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Good morning everyone and welcome back to another Sunday Saves! After a break last week, I’m back with some fresh Sunday ideas to share with you all and we’re going to talk about stress, something I’m sure we all struggle with at some point in our lives.

1) Free2BYou (Going Through The Motions: Stress and Anxiety)

Starting us off is Mrs. Johnston and she talks about her life as she tries her best to handle stress and anxiety. I noticed in her post that gratitude is very prominent which I think is fantastic but she also talks about trying to balance it all and admits that it’s good to talk about it, even though it might be hard. It’s a nice short post so it’s a quick read but I think it will be a post that, regardless or not whether you have children, most people should be able to relate to her story.

2) Escapes and Epiphanies (Guest Post – How To Avoid Stress While Travelling)

Despite not going on very many holidays, I do love heading away to get out of my own head space and my environment. What I don’t love however is the stress that seems to happen no matter what. I really do applaud those that go and travel who don’t know where they will be staying the next day and they wander so freely. I will never be that type of person and that’s okay with me, because in all honesty, I would be a stress mess. Shelby from The Shelby Chronicles guest posts on Meera’s blog and she talks about avoiding stress while travelling; her tips include choosing who you choose to go on holiday with wisely and not putting yourself under too much pressure to see absolutely everything in just a few days.

3) Life in Recovery (Wellness Basics: Breathing)

While Mrs. Johnston talked about breathing very briefly in her post, I wanted to feature this post by Life in Recovery (I can’t seem to find their name anywhere, sorry!) where they concentrate on the power of breathing, why we should care about our current breathing technique and if you could possibly even be breathing wrong? Yes, you can actually breathe wrong, I found this out when I went to my first yoga session, I felt like I was living a lie for so long! In the post, they also give some quick handy tips to help you control your breathing more and to be more open with it; they include joining a choir (if you’re open to singing in front of others), downloading a breathing app and even joining a Tai Chi class.

4) Glitz and Glamour Makeup (How To Handle Confrontation) 

I, for one, need this blog post more than anything. I can admit that I can blow a fuse within a few seconds and while it’s something I’m not proud of, it’s one of the hardest things to try and battle because really, the battle is all in your head focusing on other people’s opinions and your anger is fueled by something someone has either said or done. Kathy goes very in-depth in her post and if you do recognize yourself in her words, she has some great pieces of advice for you. So whether you bury your head in the sand, give in at the first hurdle or blow up completely, she can help.

5) HubSpot (The Surprising Relationship Between Stress and Creativity) 

I wanted to end the post with this surprising article that after reading it, isn’t as surprising as I first thought. From my own experience, when I’m put under stress because of a deadline, most of the time I seem to be able to fly through the work and hit the deadline. Braden talks more about this in detail in his article but he references Thomas Edison, explores the relationship between stress and creativity which makes logical sense and the three types of stress that we can encounter. It’s fascinating.

That’s all from this week’s Sunday Saves, if you have any blog posts or YouTube videos that you’d like to share with me regarding stress, please send me them through any of my socials (contact me here!) I’d love to take a look!

 

 

SS: Sunday Saves (#53)

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Happy Bank Holiday weekend everyone! I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend so far!  I’m back with another Sunday Saves this morning and again, just like last week, there’s no certain theme this week so I’ll be talking about handling stress, body issues and bath ballistics!

1) Not Copper Amour (Ways To Save A Stressful Day)

We’re always talking about stress, and rightly so, stress is more prevalent than ever so that’s why Emma has a wonderful blog post on how to manage this stress. Out of her list, I 100% agree with making time to eat; I love planning out a big meal and savouring it, it’s so relaxing. Physical exercise is another big way to combat stress that I couldn’t agree more with, especially when I’m in a big mood. There’s nothing better than taking your stress out on a weights sessions or even on the bike. However, cuddling up in your PJ’s with tea and chocolate works just as well for me sometimes too.

2) Surangi Style (My Body Shame)

Nital tells her story of how she currently feels about her body and you have to respect anyone who talks about their body, in a positive or a negative way, because body image is something that we all struggle with at some point in our lives. I feel like I’m on a similar path as Nital when it comes to recent body issues, so I can relate to her worries especially about buying new clothes and some of the food aspects, but more so clothing wise.

3) Desperately Seeking Lifestyle (LUSH of the Month – April – Yoga Bath Bomb)

LUSH is one of my favourite shops of all time! (Not a joke.) And unsurprisingly, I have tried the Yoga Bath Bomb but I love how much detail Ellie goes into from the scent, the appearance and she even lists all the ingredients so you don’t have to go to the website to find them out. If you’re looking for an in-depth look, Ellie has you covered.

That’s all for this week’s Sunday Saves! Thank you so much for reading and if you have any blog recommendations, please tweet me over at @RetroSnowflake or leave me a comment below.

I can’t fake this.

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Normally on a Sunday, I would be sitting here wishing you a lovely day, I would talk you through some of my favourite blog posts I’ve found during the week that have inspired me and everything would be dandy.

Today I can’t do that. I can’t force myself to write a post about inspiring and motivational blog posts when I couldn’t feel any further from that right now.

Yesterday was not a good day for me, emotionally and mentally. The night before, I had such a lovely night with my friend but I sat up an hour before bed in a complete panic with my anxiety sky high. I had no idea what I was worried about, but I was so panicked that I felt like I couldn’t go to bed.

That night I had a horrible dream, well I would say more of a nightmare. It knocked me for six the next morning. I lay in bed for an hour after waking up feeling very teary and very stressed.

I then felt quite ill walking to the gym, I stayed in the gym for ten minutes before I told myself I wasn’t going to feel any better and left.

My FitBit was really low on battery and didn’t pick up my half an hour walk to the gym (or most of the walk back).

I was walking home from going to get groceries and could feel like I was getting a lump in my throat, my breathing was getting heavier all of a sudden and I just wanted to cry. If there wasn’t a queue of cars right down the long road I was walking down, I probably would have.

To top it off, I went into the city centre with my Mum that night; we were heading to a concert and every restaurant we walked into was fully booked so we ended up in Starbucks with two teas even though we were both really hungry.

These may be classed as first world problems and to most people, they might all sound like little problems that aren’t a big deal. I completely understand that there are many horrible and bad things happening in the world right now so I know some will be thinking  “Oh no, you couldn’t go to a restaurant and get fed.” or “Oh no, your expensive tracker didn’t work.” First world problems or not, they had an effect on me. They had a very negative effect on mind, my body and my overall well-being; at times I felt like I was trapped in my own head and my own body and when I wanted to leave, I couldn’t.

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Being true to myself is something I wanted to make a priority in 2017, so that’s what I’m doing. I’m admitting that the world got to me and because of that, I won’t pretend to be in a good mood and tell my readers how posts inspired me or write a post that I don’t feel connected to. Who would that serve? What purpose would that have?  I could fake it and say I’m in such a great mood (but I won’t because I’m not). I could fake it and say ” I loved <insert blog name> because it was so motivating and I can’t wait to try this too (but I won’t because that would be a lie). That won’t help me and pretending that I’m happy and chatty and wonderful just to motivate myself for a blog post certainly won’t help anyone else either.

It’s okay to feel like the world is against you. I thought that and I acknowledge now that the world doesn’t hate me and it’s not trying to make me cry on purpose, but for that moment in time, that’s all I wanted to do. I acknowledge that my mental health is a priority and I acknowledge that these are signs to a more negative side of my mental health as a whole.

I’m sure my Sunday Saves will be back next Sunday but if you ever feel like I did, just know that it’s okay, you’re not alone and that feeling will not last forever.

Thank you for reading ❤

(Top Photo Source: Pexels.com)
(Bottom Photo Source: Unsplash.com)