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Handling Holiday Stress
By Carol LeBeau
12/6/2011 3:52:48 PM


I found it while going through the “piles” on my desk - a birthday card from my husband.  Along with his sweet message was a gift certificate good for one 90-minute “acu-massage” at Indigo Acupuncture in Coronado. My birthday was seven months ago and I’m ashamed to say I’d completely forgotten about Tom’s thoughtful gift enclosure. But my joy at discovering the lost coupon quickly turned to disappointment as I read the fine print.  The certificate was within weeks of expiring!   

But when Char Self from Indigo Acupuncture returned my frantic phone call, the news was good and bad! The good news? The popular massage therapist and acupuncturist was able to fit me into her schedule. The bad news? Her only available slot was on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving! You’ve got to be kidding! Who has time to relax for 90-minutes two days before Thanksgiving??!! 

Determined (and too cheap!) not to lose my gift for good, I grudgingly made an appointment with Char wondering how in the world I was going to fit it all in. But as I melted into a pool of peace in Char’s tranquil treatment room, I decided I could worry about the holidays later. 

In the days following that blessed break at Indigo, everything began to magically come together.  I felt great!  With laser-like focus, I was able to compile my lists, make decisions and get things done, without feeling overwhelmed.  It had to have something to do with the 90-minute “vacation” that got me out of the rat race long enough to recharge my battery! 

This really shouldn’t come as a bulletin! We all need to take a break and take care of ourselves if we want to be effective, productive and joy-filled during the holidays and all year long. 

Think about what “fills” you up - a long motorcycle ride? A funny movie?  Lingering over lunch with a dear friend or taking a walk along Sunset Cliffs.  Don’t feel guilty about taking a little time to do something you love.  Balance those activities with those that “drain” you (cooking, shopping, decorating and difficult relatives) and you’ll find you have enough energy for all of it! 

Whether it’s relaxing with a massage or with a bowl of popcorn and your favorite Christmas movie, give yourself an early holiday gift and you may just find you have more to give during the holidays. 

Joy, peace and love.  That’s what this time of year is supposed to be about.  Take a break from the madness and the “reason for the season” may just extend right into the New Year. 

Happy Holidays.

Contact Carol by emailing her at Carol@palomarhealth.org.



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