Welcome back to our series on staying calm, cool, and collected during the craziness of the holidays! In our first blog, we talked about some smaller steps you can take to maintain and regulate your well-being throughout the season. As we’ve talked about, the holidays can be associated with a lot of stress, and Wicked Sense is here to help.
Wicked Sense is more than just an online candle store, we’re a place that believes in the power of relaxation (and know that our products can help). When your environment is soothing, scentful, and intentional, everything outside your space can start to feel the same. Take a look at some of the best ways to unwind throughout the holidays, and order from Wicked Sense today!
The most wonderful time of the year…?
If you’re just visiting us for the first time, you might be wondering why we’re placing such an emphasis on self-care this season. We listen to a near-constant stream of songs telling us how amazing the holidays are; the seasonal advertising is essentially ubiquitous, and, truth be told, it can be a bit much. Researchers don’t yet have the science to explain it, but there are more deaths on Christmas, the day after Christmas, and New Year’s than any other day of the year. Many believe that an increase in stress is a contributing factor, but what is it about the holidays that can be so stressful?
Disruption in Routine
For many (if not most) people, the holidays bring a unique set of events and activities that don’t exist at other parts of the year—or at least, not in such a high concentration. The holidays often mean days and nights are filled with holiday parties, family gatherings, traveling to various destinations, and everything in between. The lack of familiarity or routine can be challenging to deal with, and can easily bring an added layer of stress to many.
Ideally, family time is a loving, wonderful experience that brings complete fulfillment and joy. However, most people know that this is not always the case (and sometimes, far from it). Sometimes the existence of unconditional love can lead certain family members to feel it’s within their right to comment on your relationship status, your haircut, your job, or pretty much anything that’s personal to you. Anyone who has had to explain why they wear a nose ring or why they’re not using their degree at their current job knows that this can be a stressful time. Family time sometimes means emotions are running high, and spending an increased amount of time with family can often lead to disagreements and tension.
Breaks in Tradition
Maybe this is your first Hanukkah or Christmas without a loved one, or maybe this is the first time you can’t make it home for the holidays. Whatever the case may be, a break in the usual celebrations can be exceptionally hard to deal with, particularly during a time of year that is so marked by tradition. So many people are reminded of the loss of a family member or friend during the holidays—the surplus of spending time with loved ones can make an absence even more prominent. For others, work schedules or college finals or budget restrictions make it really challenging to celebrate the holidays in the way that feels most familiar. When there’s a change in tradition, this can add stress and sadness to the season.
Considering that a 2015 study showed that over 72 percent of adults were stressed about money in the past month, financial struggles are more than relevant during the holidays. This is a time where gifts are being purchased, plane tickets are being bought, grocery bills are ending up higher and higher, and the list of expenses just doesn’t seem to stop. The increase in financial responsibilities can seem like a huge burden, and leave many feeling like all they want for Christmas is to not break out their wallet for awhile.
There are any number of reasons why people can feel stress during the holidays, but fortunately, there are a number of ways to remedy the overwhelming parts of the months ahead. Take a look at some activities that can help you maintain your sense of calm all season long!
Grab a regular book…
There’s a reason libraries have grown in popularity over the past decade—there’s comfort in books. Anyone who’s read a book that they’ve loved knows the escapism nature of a good ol’ fashioned page turner. Not only is reading good for you, it can feel amazing to break away from some of the busyness of the season and get lost in a book. Even if you only get to take 15-20 minutes a day to read, this is a reset that’s sure to bring some much needed relaxation.
… or a coloring one!
Who didn’t love coloring with crayons—or even markers if you were lucky— as a kid? It only makes sense that coloring books for adults have been a hit in recent years, but their value goes far past the joys of staying within the lines. Coloring is the perfect kind of mindless task that can give you just enough to focus on, while distracting you from any outside stressors. Put on a holiday movie and grab your colored pencils, and you’ll be well on your way to calming down.
Create a mini-spa.
If you ever feel like you’re too busy to spend an hour relaxing and soaking in the tub, you need this kind of break more than ever. You might not be able to get to the spa, but you can create a mini-spa at ease within the comfort of your own home! Grab a bath bomb, try a face mask, light some candles or incense, and tune out everything else. Our Holiday Dessert candle can enhance your evening with scents of pumpkin and cinnamon, or try any one of our stick incense varieties to make your home spa experience an exceptional one.
Get some exercise.
Working out might seem like the opposite of relaxing, but this can be a huge stress reliever. An article from Harvard states that “Exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators.” Getting in a workout is not only good for your body, but it’s great for your mind and mentality as well. Go for a jog, take a walk, try a yoga class—whichever exercise you try, you’ll be working towards relieving the seasonal stress.
Practice a hobby.
Far too often, the busyness of the holidays leave us experiencing a void from the lack of attention we devote to the things we love to do. Baking those cookies for the office party or getting holiday presents might mean we haven’t gotten to play our beloved guitar or piano, or have missed out on a chance to draw in our sketchbooks or knit a new scarf. Whatever your hobby might be, this is something that brings you joy and comfort—things that are highly important to hold onto when everything else starts to speed up.
Even if it’s not as frequent as before, take the time to get involved again with your favorite hobby. This provides some semblance of routine, as well as the catharsis you need to recharge throughout the holiday season. And of course, if your hobby is buying amazing scent-filled things from our online candle store, know that we fully support your endeavor.
Seeing all those cousins you haven’t talked to in a year can mean plenty of late nights, and the annual guilt-trip of trying to go to bed early. We’re all for making amazing memories with the people you love, but you’ll feel approximately ten million times better if you’re getting enough sleep along the way. Try to maintain the level of sleep you know you need to not simply function, but thrive. And if you end up sharing a room at Aunt Mae’s house over the holidays with the notorious snorer of the family, be sure to pack some earplugs, a sleep mask, and anything else you might need to get the best rest possible.
It’s practically December, meaning you’ve worked hard all year long. You’ve spent so much time trying to help others and go above and beyond in everything you do, it’s time for you to show some love and appreciation for yourself. There are few better ways to treat yourself than shopping at Wicked Sense. Considering you can find odor eliminating candles with a burn time of 70 hours for only $10, it’s a shopping decision that only makes Wicked Sense. Purchase green apple incense or our sultry Jazz Night hand poured candle, or try a holiday sample pack for only $5!
At Wicked Sense, we hope you have an amazing holiday season, and we especially hope you find the time to relax and unwind. When you take care of yourself, you’re able to better help everyone and everything else around you. Try not to get too incensed this season, and enjoy the months ahead!