Smiling young woman with christmas shopping bags in christmas decorated kitchen

The fridge is brimming with leftovers and the dishes are put away. Now it’s time to relax.

Hardly! Today’s the day to officially start holiday shopping. The deals are everywhere!

You know what comes with all of those great prices? Stress. Lots of stress. How much to spend? What to buy? How to fit it all in?

And all of that stress is not good for your health. Stress prompts your body to release hormones like cortisol which impacts your immune system and adrenaline which increases your blood pressure.  So before you negatively impact your health from all of the holiday madness, here are 5 points to keep in mind to reduce holiday stress:

Get started early – You may enjoy whisking through the mall while carolers serenade your dash, but that frantic rushing can drastically raise your blood pressure. Get your shopping done early before those special items you’re looking for are sold out.

Comparison shop – Even if you’re looking for a trendy item, shop around for the best price before snatching it up at the first place. You may be able to save yourself a bundle which will help prevent buyer’s remorse. Finding out later that you overpaid can drastically affect your health and emotional well-being.

Shop local or private – Does the craziness of fighting for a mall parking space drive you bonkers? Consider shopping at privately-owned shops or buying from someone who hand makes specialty items. Helping out others by patronizing their small businesses can actually boost your mood and your immune system.

Snoop around – Not sure what that special someone really wants. Think like Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys. Investigate a little by asking another friend or searching for their online wish list. Problem solving is a great way to boost your concentration and positively affect your well-being.

Use common ‘cents’ – Yes, cents as in dollars and cents. Unless you have money growing on a tree in the backyard, you need to set a budget. Overspending doesn’t help anyone, and in fact, it can actually hurt you. Worrying about debt can lead to chronic stress, migraines and ulcers.

Remember, it really is the thought that counts. Don’t stress out while shopping for those you care about. By keeping calm and planning ahead, the season will be more enjoyable for everyone involved. Especially your health.


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