Parkridge Offers Tips For Navigating The Holidays In A Healthy Way

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

While many people enjoy the holidays, there are a significant number of individuals who find The Most Wonderful Time of the Year to be a time of stress, anxiety and depression. Allyson Bowman, Adult Social Services Coordinator at Parkridge Valley Adult and Senior Campus, offers a Top 10 list of coping strategies and tips to navigate the demands of the holiday season in a healthy way.

1.       Let go of PERFECT. “People put pressure on themselves to engineer the perfect holiday – the perfect meals, gifts, decorations, etc.  Manage your expectations and set reasonable goals for yourself,” said Ms. Bowman. “Your family and friends are going to remember the time they spent with you, not what your house looked like or how your presents were wrapped.”

2.       Budget Wisely. “Take a few minutes to sit down and calculate what you can comfortably spend for gifts and other holiday expenses, and make every effort to stay within your limits,” said Ms. Bowman. “This will keep you from stressing about accumulated debt after the holidays are over.”

3.       Practice healthy habits as much as possible. “There is so much going on during the holidays that it can be easy to let your sleep and exercise routines fall by the wayside. Make a concerted effort to stay active and get adequate rest.”  Bowman recommends activities that combine an opportunity to get moving with a holiday celebration. “There are several holiday-themed fun runs and walks in our area – consider making one of those activities part of your family tradition.” 

4.       Take a breather when you need it. Build downtime into your holiday schedule – “It’s important to take some time for yourself when needed,” said Ms. Bowman. “Do yoga, read a book, go for a walk, take a nap – whatever works best to recharge your batteries.”

5.       Delegate. “Don’t be afraid to share responsibility for planning and execution of holiday events and activities with friends and family,” said Ms. Bowman.  “You’ll be less likely to end up feeling overwhelmed.”

6.       Make new memories. “Don’t be afraid to swap out an old holiday tradition with a new activity that works better for you. Circumstances change, and it’s important to be flexible and create traditions that work for you,” said Ms. Bowman.

7.       Give back. “Volunteering during the holidays is a great way to socialize and feel good about helping others,” said Ms. Bowman.

8.       Cultivate patience. “When family and friends get together, there are many opportunities for misunderstandings and disagreements,” said Ms. Bowman. “Just remember that you have come together to celebrate a holiday, not argue endlessly. If you find yourself getting upset, try to agree to disagree, or remove yourself from the situation. This will make the holidays easier not only for you, but those around you as well.”

9.       Mourn if you need to. If the holidays bring up memories of loved ones, allow yourself to feel sadness and grief. “It’s okay to mourn if you have lost a loved one or if you can’t be with your loved one during the holidays,” said Ms. Bowman. “It’s normal and healthy to feel sadness – unexpressed emotions can be the most destructive.” Give yourself permission to feel those feelings, then take the steps to move past them – either by getting out and doing something active, reminiscing about happy times with friends and family, or by doing something for someone else. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for help from your friends and loved ones if you need it. 

10.   Seek help if you need it. “If you have significant feelings of anxiety, irritability or sadness that last for several days, seek professional help,” said Ms. Bowman. “Parkridge Valley has a 24-hour RESPOND hotline staffed by medical professionals who can give advice on treatment for your condition or refer you to a mental health provider.”


Bradley County EMS Reviews And Drills For Infectious Diseases

With the growing concerns of infectious disease, Bradley County EMS is being proactive and reviewing their infectious disease protocols. Current policies and procedures are being reviewed and updated. Personal protection equipment has been updated as well to provide the best protection to the EMS responders. Emergency responders are exposed to a variety of contaminates on ... (click for more)

Morning Pointe Of Hixson Celebrates 5th Anniversary

Morning Pointe of Hixson Assisted Living and Alzheimer's Memory Care is turning five. Officials said, "Come celebrate. Experience a day in the life of a Morning Pointe resident. Enjoy food, special activities and entertainment. Plus autograph the newly-released Hixson Family Genealogy Book. "   There will be a Kindermusik demo, mini art and baking classes along ... (click for more)

Additions And Improvements At Camp Jordan Arena Coming Soon

Additions and improvements are coming to Camp Jordan Arena in the near future. At the Thursday night meeting of the East Ridge city council, approval was given for buying new playground equipment. It will come from Gametime, a locally-based company. The VP of Marketing lives in East Ridge and made a proposal to set up the playground at Camp Jordan so his company could use it for ... (click for more)

Teenager Killed In ATV Accident Thursday Night

Damon Lee Jones, 15, was killed Thursday night in an ATV accident in Walker County. It was reported he was riding with a 17-year old, when they tried to enter a church parking lot, but ran into a cable barrier. The accident happened on Dunwoody Road in LaFayette. The other rider, identified as Timothy J. Wallin, was not injured.   (click for more)

Tom Dugan Was A Good Man

Tom was my boss for most of my 36 years at Carta.  At the ceremony where I was awarded my 30-year service award, Tom said, "Don disagrees with 85% of my decisions, but I wish I had 80 more employees just like him." This kind of indicates our relationship. When I asked him to help with my plans for a reunion for the group of Veterans that I served with in Vietnam, he quickly ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A Veterinarian’s Horse Sense

I suspect you’ve heard by now that a doctor in New York City, who volunteers with “Doctors Without Borders,” just got back from the African nation of Guinea on October 17 – last Friday – and on Thursday tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus. Luckily, he came in actual contact with only a few people but he reportedly rode a subway, took a taxi, went on a three-mile run and ... (click for more)