How to handle holiday stress

  • Published
  • By Dr. Julie Reese
  • 944th Fighter Wing Dept of Psychological Health

Some say that the holidays are the happiest time of year bringing joy and cheer; however, for those who live far away from family and friends, no ability to travel, those who are alone, those who grieve the loss of family members or friends or the loss of a relationship, or those who struggle with mental health symptoms, this time of year can be burdensome and dreadful.

Managing holiday stress includes,

  • Planning ahead
  • Putting yourself first
  • Keeping your finances in check
  • Honoring loved ones you have lost
  • Indulging in moderation
  • Don’t be afraid to say “no”


It is important for us all to practice self-care and coping mechanisms, and lean on our faith as we navigate this holiday journey of 2020.  Keep moving, get lots of rest, eat well, and exercise.  Be kind to yourself!  The New Year is just ahead and so are new opportunities.  These unique times can be especially difficult, as we forgo the large family gatherings and physical hugs, and replace it with social media connections, social distancing, and virtual hugs.  Please reach out to your First Sergeants, Chiefs, supervisors, Chaplains, DPH, etc. and let them know if you and your family are alone and could use some extra support this time of year.  Remember to be a great Wingman and reach out to your brothers and sisters!