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Minimize your stress this holiday season!

December 1, 2015

Minimize your stress this holiday season![1]

Preparing for the holidays comes with increased demands on our time and activity. Stress results when demands exceed our ability to cope. The holidays are events out of the ordinary that we often expect to be extraordinary. Finding the perfect gift, preparing the perfect meal or hosting a family gathering with no setbacks or conflicts may not be a realistic expectation, for yourself or for others. When expectations are too high, when they are not met or things happen that are out of our control, we can end up feeling disappointed or frustrated and stress is a likely result.

Everyone has a different way of coping with stress and some can make the situation better or worse. Here are some positive ways to cope with holiday stress:

  • Picture1Review your expectations for the holidays. Make sure your expectations are yours and not someone else’s and make sure that they are realistic. What you can do and want to do might be very different.
  • Make sure that you are expecting something over which you have some control. Make sure that you plan an event that you can make happen.
  • Let others know what you expect of them and don’t forget to ask for help if you need it.
  • Only take on what you can manage. Spending more than you can afford or inviting more people to an event than you can accommodate is likely to lead to stress and frustration.
  • Review or plan your coping strategies before a special event. Time out for physical or relaxation exercise, a walk or hobbies can be great coping mechanisms for stress and are good lifestyle practices in general.
  • Focus on what really matters. Think about what is more important to you – the perfect gift, a turkey cooked perfectly and on time or enjoying time with family and friends.

Your Employee and Family Assistance Plan (EFAP) through LifeWorks also has plenty of recourses to assist you with managing holiday stress. Visit the LifeWorks website to view some helpful articles.

Individual Health, Dental and Travel

Picture2Individual Health Dental Travel (HDT) Insurance plan assistance, offered through HUB International STRATA Benefits Consulting, is a service that aims to provide additional coverage for an Employee who is already covered, or provide coverage for a dependent who is not otherwise covered for benefits.

Individual insurance is all about you. The insurance carrier, plan level and options are all chosen based on your wants, needs, and budget. If you have pre-existing medical conditions, you can apply for plans that offer non-medical applications provided you apply within a certain timeframe of terminating your Group coverage.

This program is 100% voluntary for any Employee requiring additional coverage, leaving the Group Plan, or in need of coverage for a family member; simply contact HUB STRATA for your initial Needs Assessment.

Contact HUB STRATA at 1-866-787-2826 or at to discuss your post-group health, dental and travel needs.

Supporting Your Wellness

shutterstock_173113409The LifeWorks website contains useful tools and articles to help you and your family. You even have access to seminars at

If you’re a family caregiver, you may be struggling to balance the demands of your many roles. This month, LifeWorks will feature their resources on caring for older dependent loved ones. Check out these resources:

  • Podcast – Facing a Terminal Illness
  • New Seminar – The Sandwich Generation

[1] Cohen, Dr. K.R. 2014. “Psychology Works” Fact Sheet: Holiday Stress. Canadian Psychological Association.