While a holiday is considered one of the happiest times of the year, it can be dreadful and overwhelming for some people. If you are the one who experiences this feeling during the holiday season, you certainly can relate to it.

Ugh, those small talks with friends and family? How am I going to approach them? What if they approach me first? How am I going to respond? Are we all going to eat together? No, that’s awkward. All the stammering and stuttering I had last time, what if it happens again? What if I slip and fall off the stage?

The thought of meet-ups seems to get on your nerves. If that’s so, you are not alone. Around 88% of Americans experience this condition we call holiday stress. Let’s ponder on some practical tips to help you cope with it effectively so you can
cherish this holiday season wholeheartedly.

The Power of Self-Talk

Positive affirmations can do wonders when it comes to dealing with social anxiety. Studies have shown positive affirmations reduce stress and anxiety significantly. Try shifting your focus to positive possibilities instead of thinking what can go wrong. Do not think, ” I might sound stupid,” ” They must be laughing at me,” or ” What if I get ignored.” Just sit back, close your eyes, and repeat, ” I can do it, I can get over it” ” I am notresponsible for others’ opinion of me,” and ” It’s going to be a great day ahead.” Ensure that no one is perfect, and there is no need to idealize perfectionism. Just keep
yourself composed and normal.

Engage in Small Activities

A busy hand can help cope with the anxiety and awkwardness of social gathering. You can offer a helping hand to the host, or can just play around with kids and pets. This will also allow you to interact with people related to them passively without putting in any active effort. Explore ways to complement good things and people around you. This creates a
positive aura and helps people engage with you automatically without being awkward.

Set Boundaries

It is equally important to set and practice your boundaries. Try to communicate them to people politely. Don’t let others drain you emotionally and physically. Be clear about when and how to say no. If you are uncomfortable answering a question or engaging in a particular activity, just convey it clearly and change the topic.

Breathing Techniques and Muscle Relaxation

If you experience dizziness, palpitations, or lightheadedness, try not to panic. Just excuse yourself for a minute. Sit calmly, breathe in for a few seconds, stop, and slowly breathe out of your mouth. This decreases heart rate and helps reduce anxiety and palpitations. Meditation and gratitude will positively impact your thinking pattern immediately. Focus on what you can control instead of what you cannot.

The Takeaway Message

Social anxiety is something that can immensely impact your mental and even physical well-being. Not being able to cope with it results in isolation, depression, and even suicidal thoughts. Therefore, it is essential to recognize and take appropriate steps to deal with it. Holiday seasons are something to look forward to instead of being afraid of. Anything
bothering you should certainly be dealt with, so that you can enjoy these moments as everybody else does. It is recommended to seek professional help if you are unable to cope with your social anxiety.

Don’t let anything dull your spark! After all, You matter; your mental health matters!

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