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The Head, the Heart, & the Holidays: Letting go of holiday stress

Harboring any stress or tough feelings can cause you to miss out on any holiday magic.

CLEVELAND — Maybe you're feeling like baking that turkey, but having the whole family and kids the over is just too much this holiday season.

With the stress of the pandemic and the winter months ahead, it can be hard to force yourself to feel excited about the holidays. The good news is, that's okay.

Experts say, letting go of a bit of that stress is so important, though. We talked to Tasha Brandt, a life coach expert, who says the holidays are the perfect time for that.

"There is a really great opportunity to take the pressure off, of what the holidays need to be this year," she said. "Take the pressure off what Thanksgiving has been, what Christmas has been."

Brandt has these tips she calls "winterizing your mental health" to help you step out of stress.

1. Connect with your body

"One of those things would be, grab an ice pack, put it on your chest, take a few deep breaths, and get  back into your body."  

2. Put on some music and tune out for a minute or two

"To take even two minutes to myself, [it] doesn't even have to be in a separate room. In that room, put on some headphones, maybe there's some music that you love."

3. Practicing self care

"Washing and massaging my face. Something like that--getting into your body, feeling your muscles--can really help calm things."

Once you've calmed down, remember it's okay to let some little things go and enjoy this holiday season. This year, we all need that now more than ever.

"What if you need a day of rest and that's what Thanksgiving is this year, and a neighbor drops off a really beautiful meal for you?" Brandt asked. "What if that's all that it is, and that's all that you need? This is such a good time to sink into who you are, what you appreciate, and your gratitude, getting back to gratitude."

If you need help settling into yourself, Brandt is hosting a self-care workshop this weekend. The event is $20, but financial support can be provided. You can send Brandt a message on Instagram if you would like to attend. Her handle is @Tasha_Brandt_.

Credit: Tasha Brandt
Tasha Brandt's self care workshop