Episode 35 - ​​How to Avoid Holiday Stress and Overwhelm

Dec 08, 2021
Episode 35 - ​​How to Avoid Holiday Stress and Overwhelm


Do you love the magic of Christmas and look forward to it with excitement? Or do you dread all the stress and chaos that often comes with it? This time can be even more emotionally charged if you have lost loved ones or have experienced problems.  

So, what if I was to tell you that it doesn’t have to be like that? 

Yes - you CAN enjoy this precious time with your family, get into the festive spirit, grab this opportunity to relax AND avoid ever feeling overwhelmed. 

Now that Christmas is just around the corner, I decided to explain exactly how you can do this. 

In this week’s episode of the podcast, I’ll share with you some tips and strategies I apply during this busy season to enjoy myself without the overwhelm. 

I talk about planning for the next 90 days, batching my work tasks (such as recording for this show), having a social media detox, delegation and how to avoid the food coma! I’ll also give you the heads up on the apps that I use to plan and organise my tasks plus some healthy gift ideas for your friends and family. 

Check out E-lifestyle Implementation Academy with my new 10-week programme that will ensure you enjoy the holidays and give yourself that time to recharge and prepare for the coming year ahead.

Eleshia’s Essentials:

  • I want to take care of everything that I need to within my business for it to continue to run without me having to work on it on a daily basis. 
  • Make sure that you tell your clients when you're finishing up for your holidays and when you're returning so that they know that you'll have this downtime to spend this time to rest and reflect and enjoy your family.
  • It's really important to think about where you are in your cycle, what kinds of exercises you're doing, and also the duration of your workout.
  • There are different things that you can do to make sure that you're enjoying your time, but you're also keeping yourself nourished with some healthier options.

Other resources mentioned

About the show:

Need simple strategies to help you grow your business and achieve more without working harder? Struggling to balance work, life, and all your other commitments and don’t want to burn out? You’re in the right place. 

The Eleshia Show is a holistic business and lifestyle strategy podcast to help you get clear on your business goals, stop procrastinating, boost your income, and do what lights you up. 

Women are taking notice! We have listeners across 41 countries and over 420 cities! We’re teaching female business owners across the world how to achieve more with less while looking after themselves. And we can do the same for you!

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Tune in to the podcast every Wednesday to discover exactly what expert CEOs did to get their businesses off the ground and achieve success so you can do the same! 

With your host, Eleshia Harris, business coach and growth strategist, you can redefine what success means, ditch the stress and confusion and learn how to run your business from a place of ease and excitement. 

If you want to talk business, wellbeing, lifestyle, mindset, goals, and scaling organic growth, don’t miss it!

Connect with Eleshia and the community today

Show Transcript:

Eleshia Harris: We have all gone through so much this year. And sometimes we forget how much trauma we're holding and how much we need to just heal, and how much we need to just stay still to be able to do that. So give yourself permission to to do those little things for yourself as well.

Hey, I'm Eleshia Harris, and I am the host of The Eleshia Show where each week, we'll be having conversations about how to enhance your wellbeing. We'll be sharing strategies and stories and insights to build your business while still navigating life because sometimes we try to separate the two. And let's face it. If you are not well, you have no business. I am a holistic business growth strategist and a wellness coach who spent over 15 years in corporate before deciding to choose me first to build my brand, Eleshia Lifestyle. I'm here to teach you how to redefine what success means to you, ditch the stress and confusion, and learn how to run your business from a place of ease and excitement. Let's get into this week's episode.

Hello, and welcome back to The Eleshia Show. I cannot believe that I'm sitting here to discuss how to prepare for the holidays. I mean, wow, how quickly has this year gone. It's just flown by. And for me, It's been an amazing journey. But it really has flown, so I can imagine that you may be feeling the same way. Now, we're coming to the end of the year. And December for me is always quite bittersweet because my daughter was born eight days before it would have been my mom's birthday. And so I am always in that happy space, but then I am also in that sad space because I miss my mom. I wish my mom would have met my daughter. And yes, so I'm always in all of the feels. Then we have Christmas. So it's always quite busy for me from an emotional and physical standpoint. So I'm here just to share some of the things that I've put in place to help me through this busy time. But also, to make sure that I am always taking care of myself but trying to lessen that overwhelm. This week, I wanted to just say thank you to all of my listeners. I know we are all going through a hard time at the moment, and I am so, so grateful that you continue to listen to The Eleshia Show. And I really, really hope that this episode serves you well. Let's get into it. 

When I was planning out my year and just doing some forward planning, I decided that I was going to finish work in the first week of December because I just know how busy it will get for me. So I am putting on my 'out of the office' from the 10th of December. And I will only be doing things in the background and just serving some of my clients that I know need a little bit of extra support around that time. So out of office is going on. I'm also going to pause my inbox. And I didn't know you could do this, so thank you Jac for sharing that with me. So I'm going to pause my inbox. You can only do this if you're on Google, I believe. But I'm going to pause it from the 10th of December. I'll just be checking it periodically, but I'm going to put on an out-of-office that says just that so people don't expect a quick response from me. For my business email, I'm going to do the same. I'm going to put on an autoresponder, just telling people, again, that I'm out of the office and I will only be checking a couple of times of the week. And that for me just stills the noise because I don't know about you. I mean, I am subscribed to quite a few different companies. So I'm also going to take this time to really see what is serving me and what's going to come into the New Year with me with regards to subscriptions of other people's email lists and so forth.

I'm also going to switch off any notifications that I get from any of the systems that I use. So take, for example, ClickUp. I use that on a daily basis. So I am often getting notifications from it, so I'm going to switch off those. I can always go in there manually and just double-check, but it would just help me not to be getting pinged. I'm always on my phone whilst I'm trying to spend time with myself and my family. I'm also considering taking a break from social media. And you can let your followers know that you're doing this so that they know that you're going to be quiet, and they won't mind.

It's a great time to also check their subscriptions. So the business subscriptions that you're using and decide what is making the cut for next year, I'm guilty of forgetting to do this. So I've made a whole list of the products that I have not used in 2021 that I am still spending money on. But it happens, so I am going to be doing that. And if you feel uncomfortable with just taking a break from social media, then you can always schedule your posts. There are so many different schedulers that make it so easy to be able to do that now that we should all be taking advantage of because we are not just content makers, we are people as well. And we need a break. I think I've mentioned it before, and I know certainly when Jenna and I are having a conversation, she was in the middle of batching three months out so that she could take maternity leave. And I am doing as much batching as I can for the month of December because I just want to be present.

I really want to enjoy the time that I'm going to get to spend with myself and my family. I want to enjoy celebrating my daughter's third birthday. I really want to honor and enjoy celebrating my mom. And I just want to have a great time over Christmas as well. I don't want to be worrying about anything else that is going on with the business. So I am really, really focusing on batching out as much as I can. So I'm talking podcast episodes and also all of the admin that goes behind that. Just ensuring that all of my admin is up to date, including my accounts, because we all know we get to the end of the year and then like, oh gosh, I got to do all of my accounts. So I'm just making sure everything is up to date. And, yeah, it's just going to make this time just a little bit more enjoyable knowing that I have taken care of everything that I need to within my business for it to continue to run without me having to work on it on a daily basis.

I've also started to plan for the next 90 days. And it's really a high-level plan of the things that I want to accomplish in those 90 days. Because come January, I'm going to then go into more detail. And if you don't know, I am running a whole 10-week program to ensure that you can do the same as well. So the program starts with a planning session, and we're going to map out what you want to do over the course of those 10 weeks. And then each week, I am going to help you to implement everything that you've put down on that paper so that you can be held accountable. We're going to do it as a community, and I'm really, really excited about that. So if you didn't know, then I'm here to share even more information. 

Another key thing is to make sure that you tell your clients when you're finishing up for your holidays and when you're returning so they know that you are spending this time to really rest and reflect and enjoy your family. So that way, they're not looking for responses from you, they're not looking to hear from you. They know that you are enjoying your time away as well. And that really helps to set boundaries as well. And it also makes your clients look at the way they are working. And hopefully, they'll be able to take from what you're practicing also.

This year, I am not buying up the whole shop. And I'm talking about food. I'm talking about presents. I'm talking about new fancy outfits to wear on Christmas day. I am not doing any of that. I will be trying to ensure that I get the chunk of my present buying and my food shopping is done in advance. I will be popping into some of the shops because I really want to help to support some of the local shops. But when I can, I will also be using it online because shopping with a three-year-old is sometimes really difficult. I know parents feel me. I know that we're still in this difficult time, but if you can try and spend some time with the people that you really love and enjoy, I recently had a chance to spend some time with my lovely group of friends. And it was just so good for my soul. We hadn't seen each other as a collective group for nearly 18 months. And it was just so good to just feed off everybody's energies. And don't forget, this is the time to really just relax and enjoy those Christmas movies and enjoy putting your feet up on the sofa and binge-watching, and just giving yourself that time to recharge. 

I can't emphasize this enough. We have all gone through so much this year. And sometimes we forget how much trauma we're holding and how much we need to just heal, and how much we need to just stay still to be able to do that. So give yourself permission to do those little things for yourself as well.

So my theme at the moment is delegation. I will not be doing everything this year. And to be honest, I am lucky that everybody does pitch in when they need to. But I will be delegating. So Jordan and Elessandra will be decorating the tree, and it will stay the way they've decorated it. I will be delegating the wrapping of presents. I'll be doing online shopping. And cleaning of the house, it will be done as a collective. We will be doing it all together. I will not be trying to be superwoman and trying to get everything done while my little elves just sitting down and eating chocolates. That will not be happening.

Now, let's talk about movement. Because I still want you to consider getting it in, but I don't want you to overwhelm yourself or pressurize yourself to be doing those long workouts. When you know, you don't have the time or the energy to do it. So really start to think about the time that you do have. I'll be condensed in my exercise routines to around 15 to 60 minutes daily depending on what I have on. I am still going to continue to try and move, and I'll be doing it in all different ways like we've mentioned before, especially if you are trying to sync your female cycle. It's really important to think about where you are and what kinds of exercises you're doing, but also the duration. So I will really be listening and following my intuition at this time, and really trying to be still and trying not to push myself because I know how emotionally charged I'm going to be. So, therefore, I need to just do what my body needs, and not try and push through.

So there'll still be a lot of movement happening throughout December definitely, but I will be changing, again, how I do things. So there will be lots of quick little movement routines happening. And maybe I might share all that I'm doing, what do you think? Let me know. Let me know if you'll be interested in that. So now, let's talk about food. Are you worried about overeating over the holiday. Me too. Like you go into the supermarket at the end of October and they've already got the mince pies out, and they can be so hard to resist. So I am just going to share some of the things that I've done in the past. I wrote a blog about this previously, so I’m going to share some of the things that I do just to ensure that I'm not going all in because I still want to feel energized and nourished. And sometimes, you end up just feeling bloated and sluggish and sick. And sometimes you end up being in that food coma. You sit down after your holiday meals and you just end up sitting on the sofa and falling asleep, and missing out on being present. So this has been huge for me over the last couple of years. And I hope it helps you too.

So firstly, I always like to enjoy a healthy breakfast. It just helps to set me up and also, it has really helped me recognize that if I have something sugary in the morning like cereal or a chocolate croissant, that's what I end up wanting throughout the whole day. So for me, I find that if I have something high in protein then I feel more satisfied and set up for the day. So for example, eggs and salmon, or I love chia seeds pancakes and they just helped me feel really nourished, really full. After 90 minutes, I'm not feeling like I need to eat again. So yes, just think about those things. The Christmas dinner and nobody in my house likes Turkey, so we usually have chicken. So I get everything prepared the night before and therefore in the morning, we can really just enjoy a lovely breakfast. Because it's not about me being in the kitchen for the whole day. I've witnessed that over the years where my mom or a family friend would be in the kitchen all day. And some people love that, but I am not one of those. I want to have everything that I can prep so that I can spend more time in front of the TV and in front of the people that I enjoy as opposed to sweating in the kitchen. So that's what I love to do. And I don't know, is that something that you think of doing as well? Or are you more of an all-in-on-the-day kind of person?

And so that my hand is not always in the chocolate tin, I like to prepare my own healthy snacks. So we make our own gingerbread biscuits. And also this year, I'm going to make some chocolate-covered flapjacks. And I'm also going to make some of my own chocolate so that I know exactly what's in them. We can play, and it's a way that I can get my daughter and my brother involved as well. So yes, I'm really excited about doing that.

If you know that you're going to be visiting, why don't you take your own healthy dish with you so that way, you're not being a disrespectful guest, you are just ensuring that you have what you want to eat as well. Great ideas are different salads or a veggie platter or fruit salad. Yes, there are so many different things that you can make and take with you. And just like what I said about healthy chocolates, maybe you want to make that as a present. There are different things that you can do to make sure that you're enjoying your time, but you're also keeping yourself nourished with some healthier options. This tip has really, really helped me. So fill up on your healthy foods first. I know it sounds simple, but it works so well. And it takes that edge off you filling up on the food that you know you want to indulge in, but foods that make your sugar levels really spike. So for me, I found that if I just filled up on the healthier options first of my dinner or my lunch. Then when it came to wanting to indulge in the other foods, I didn't want as much. Yes, I didn't have those food comas. So that has really, really, really helped me. I hope it helps you too.

Hydration, hydration, hydration, hydration. It's usually mistaken for hunger. And then we overeat, and then we start to feel really full. And usually, we just need to hydrate. So make sure you'll get in enough water over the course of the holidays because it can quite easily stop you from overindulging or from feeling really bad that you've had that extra glass of wine. Then you've got a headache the next day. So like I've said previously, make sure that you've got different water bottles all around the house so that you can get in your daily intake. But also, when it comes to alcohol, what I found really helpful is to have spritzes. So I like to have sparkling water with wine to make my drinks a little bit longer. I don't always have all of the concentrated drinks, I have the drinks that are made with tonic water or that have orange juice in, or have some kind of mix in them as well because I found that that has really helped me also with my hydrations and with my hangovers.

So yes, it has really just made a difference for me, just to make sure that I'm really, really hydrated. And guess what, it can be free. But also, it stops you from eating so you don't have to worry about the holiday pounds so much because you're not eating or drinking as many calories. Lastly, but not least, enjoy every moment of your food intake. If you want to indulge, indulge. If these tips have been helpful, I'm really happy. But just enjoy every mouthful, and we've mentioned it before. It just really helps your digestive system when you eat mindfully and slowly. So just enjoy every mouthful. Have that extra piece of cake if you want it but know that you are going to enjoy it and not complain about having that extra piece of auntie's cake. Just enjoy it. Really just enjoy it.

I just wanted to say, I know the holidays can be really emotionally charged for us all who have lost people, and so be kind to yourselves. Please be kind to yourselves. Anyway, until next week. I want you to remember that you are so amazing. I am so thankful that you continue to listen to these episodes with me. Continue to share, like, and review. I see all of your messages, and I am truly, truly grateful. And just enjoy this time. I'm thankful that we're all here, and I'm wishing you all the best. I'll see you next week.

I really hope you enjoyed this episode of The Eleshia Show. If you loved this episode as much as I did, head over and rate and subscribe so you'll never miss an episode. New episodes drop every week on a Wednesday. I can't wait to hang out with you again soon. And lastly, remember to invest in yourself first because you are important and amazing. Take care. Until next time. Bye-bye.


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