Thanksgiving is in just a few days...can you believe it? I'll admit, I can't wrap my head around how fast time is flying by. That said, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because as fast as time flies...this day is an opportunity to slow things down. It's an opportunity to have a few days off to spend some quality time reflecting on what the year has already brought to us and share some quality time with family and friends. But the holidays can also bring more than delicious food and an opportunity to strut your stuff in your comfy pants. I'm talking about the side dish that no one really wants to indulge in...stress. Spending time with people you don't see often and being thrust into situations that are out of your comfort zone can feel uncomfortable and trigger feelings of stress and anxiety even for those of us who look forward to the holiday. What does stress have to do it? Stress can play a role in skin issues like flaring up your acne, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, dark under eye circles, itching, dry skin and speeding up the appearance of sagging skin and wrinkles. The feeling of stress triggers the release of stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline to surge. It can also mess with your other hormones like insulin, estrogen and thyroid which can impact your metabolism, energy, mood and not to mention your cycles and fertility. So during a holiday that is supposed to be all about giving "thanks", I want to be sure you are armed with top tips to keep you in a festive mood even when Aunt Bessie is doing her best to ruffle your feathers. 1. Just breathe: Sounds simple enough right? Breathing is hands down the fastest way to reset your nervous system and bring you back to a sense of calm and peace even when it feels like total chaos around you. Inhale through your nose for a count of 4, hold the breath for a count of 4, exhale for a count of 4 and hold the breath for a count of 4. This is a breathing technique called "box breathing." Repeat this cycle at least 5 times, and longer if you are so inclined. 2. Feel all the feels: Feeling grateful, annoyed, angry, nervous, elated? Whatever you are feeling positive or negative...feel it. Feel it without judgement or spinning a story about why you are feeling it. Allow yourself to just be with whatever you are feeling. Life is not all unicorns and rainbows, we feel stuff. Stuff that makes us feel good as well as stuff that doesn't and guess what? That's normal. It's expected. It's totally cool. So feel it all, acknowledge that you are feeling it without guilt, without shame, blame or some other name. Allow yourself to feel so you can let the feeling go. 3. Amp up appreciation: Sure, Thanksgiving is about giving thanks and the benefits of expressing gratitude are evidence based and far reaching. That being said, sometimes finding something to feel grateful for can feel like a challenge when you are in the midst of a difficult situation. When that's the case, turn to gratitude's cousin, appreciation. Having appreciation for something is simply the recognition and enjoyment of the good qualities of someone or something. For example, the smell of roasted turkey, the laughter of a child, the crisp cool breeze outside, twinkling stars in the sky......observing and having an appreciation of something big or small will instantly lift your spirits without the pressure of having to rattle off a list of all the things for which you should feel grateful. Give one or all of these a try and let me know how it goes🔥 Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving!