Remember the days when you did not have to worry about Hanukah, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve until the day AFTER Thanksgiving? Those days are gone. While the lengthy holiday season can be enjoyable, many people experience stress from the demands of buying gifts and preparing for big gatherings.
Fortunately, we can take actions to manage some of the stress we feel during the holiday season or at any other time of the year. The American Psychological Association (APA) offers these tips for dealing with stress:
Take a break from the stressor. This sounds easier said than done. British scientists discovered that reading a book relieves stress. These researchers found that reading a memoir can reduce stress by as much as 65%. If you need recommendations, Google “best memoirs” or ask your librarian. I recommend “The World’s Strongest Librarian,” “Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Time,” “Spoken from the Heart,” and “Three Weeks with My Brother.”
Exercise. We know that exercise provides many benefits, but it is challenging to find time to exercise. I believe that exercise should be fun. Borrow exercise DVDs from the Library to find out what works for you. Many of these DVDs are geared for seniors. Since I enjoy dancing, I checked out Zumba DVDs. Maybe I will borrow the DVD “I Hate to Exercise, I Love Tap.”
Smile and laugh. I love books that make me laugh out loud. The Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich is hilarious. I can’t wait to read about Stephanie’s latest adventures in “Turbo-Twenty Three.” If you are not familiar with this series, I suggest you begin with the first book “One for the Money.” I also enjoyed reading “The Rosie Project” by Graeme Simsion. The main character reminds me of Sheldon Cooper from “The Big Bang Theory.” This popular TV show is currently airing its 10 th season. If you need to catch up on Sheldon and the gang, seasons 1 through 9 are available at the Library.
Get social support. Surround yourself with positive people. Volunteering at the Library gives you opportunities to get out of the house, meet new people, and catch up with friends. You can get exercise, too, if you volunteer to shelve books or sort books for the Friends of the Library book sales.
Meditate. Make a quiet moment for yourself. Marvel at the beauty of the red rocks, take a hike, watch a sunset, walk through a beautiful garden, keep a gratitude journal, write a letter to a loved one, or listen to music.
The staff and volunteers at the Library wish you a most joyous holiday season. We look forward to assisting you with your library needs in the coming year. Thank you for supporting library services in the Village of Oak Creek.
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Village News appears monthly in The Villager and is also presented on Sedona Biz.
By Cheryl Yeatts
Cheryl Yeatts is Manager of Sedona Public Library in the Village.