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Let’s Manage Our Stress Before the Holidays Kick in…

Let’s Manage Our Stress Before the Holidays Kick in…

This week’s post is my short version of an article by my friends Odette and Michelle at Organic Soul. For the full version of this post, click here. Odette and Michelle promote healthy living much like we do at SaS, and you’ll see that their philosophy is very much in line with the SaS Compass. They are joining forces with Kathryn and I for a special promotion. They will give away a complimentary health session (valued at $200) as well as a signed copy of Smarts and Stamina to the 1,000th person who signs up for their newsletter – sounds like a good opportunity to me!  I recommend you check it out, but first, here’s this week’s tip:

According to a survey by the American Psychological Association, nearly 1 in 5 test cases reached their highest stress level 15 or more days per month. That trickles down to half of a person’s life if you extend it out for the full year. Studies outside of these are constantly showing that the human body’s reaction to stress could be one of the leading causes of many life threatening diseases…including cancer and heart disease. Given these statistics, I would say we aren’t fairing too well, and our present-day health crisis in this country is proof enough.

As I read recently, “Stress is modern-day trash. If not disposed of properly, it will pile up and overtake one’s life.” In that vein, and with the Holidays a few weeks away (yet another stressor!), I want offer some guidance on how to manage stress in your life.

Stress Busters:

• Avoid people and situations that create a negative environment
• Become a positive thinker
• Look at your anger, fear and challenges as an opportunity for growth
• Create time for what you love especially if you think you don’t have time for it
• Let go of who you think you should be and become who you want to be
• Compromise and let go of perfectionism
• Accept what you can’t change
• Forgive others as well as yourself
• Eat the right foods – food and moods are one and the same

Other helpful suggestions:

• Exercise: If you find yourself not able to participate in your usual gym visit because times get busy grab a friend or family member, and walk or ride a bicycle in your neighborhood. If visiting others, ask what they do for activity and allow yourself to join them. Movement of any kind is better than none.

• Sleep: This is HUGE. 7-8 hours of sleep is like a miracle drug for most. When we sleep our bodies are able to regenerate themselves, Without sleep, the reverse happens and our moods can spiral out of control.

• Indulge in every form of relaxation technique that works for you. My suggestions: yoga, meditation, guided visualization, breathing, massage, hot bath.


Can’t quite breathe, relax, visualize and meditate effectively? The benefits of doing so a seemingly endless, so better start now before Holiday season stress kicks in!  See Do a Mini on p. 42 of our book.

  • Steve

    This is a timely and valuable post. Rarely will you find so much usable wisdom in one small blog. Well done!


  • Thank you Steve! And thanks to Odette and Michelle at Organic Soul for sharing their wisdom!

MJ Shaar – in 20 seconds

MJ is one of the most sought-after experts blending positive psychology and health promotion. She spent over 15 years coaching, teaching, speaking, researching and testing smart health habits. Marie-Josée Shaar received her undergrad at McGill University in Organizational Behavior, followed by a Master of Applied Positive Psychology at University of Pennsylvania. She's certified as a Wellness Culture Coach, a Personal Trainer, and a Nutrition and Wellness Consultant.

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