Special Report: Holiday Stress Part Two 

Thursday is Thanksgiving and for many people it kicks off a hectic holiday season.On Tuesday, we looked at how stress can ruin the holidays and your health.TV 5’s Diana Bosch tells us how to make the holidays a happier time for yourself and those around you.When she sat down with various experts, they cited lack of money, pressure and time as the biggest contributing factors to holiday stress. Kathy Price is a regular at Group Power at the Bangor YMCA.Price has been attending the class for the past four years.Like many folks, she admits the holidays are a difficult time, but she gets through it with the help of exercise.”It helps relieve me from screaming around the house and from taking it out on other people. I take it out on my body,” she says.Instead of tapping into her normal routine, Price prefers to change it up.”Things that you normally wouldn’t do if you’re running around, you’re going to parties, you’re trying to give gifts that type of stuff do something a little different.”Holiday parties means holiday sweets. Group Power instructor Tammy Hodgdon says people tend to eat more fats and sugar, which end up decreasing your energy. She says stick to the USDA food pyramid to keep yourself on track.”That’s probably as basic as you get and it really is basic we don’t need to make it very scientific and difficult,” she said.If you can’t go to a gym, there are other ways you can work out.”If you’re going shopping, everybody’s heard of mall walking you know before you shop maybe take a few laps around the mall, it’s warm in there you don’t have to worry about being cold.”Experts say the biggest stress factor around the holidays is money. Jason Elliott with University Credit Union says he sees an increase in transactions and loans. He recommends opening up a club account.”It’s a small savings account. You put 10, 15, 20 dollars a week and when the holiday season comes around it’s not as burdensome to them,” he said.Elliott says its important to use resources like online banking to manage your money.Marion Syversen, President of Financial Consulting Firm, Norumbega Financial, says the best way to decrease stress is to plan ahead.”Next year, Christmas happens, Hannukah will happen again, so if you can you get ready for next year’s Christmas and Hannukah by starting to save a little bit now so when it comes it won’t be so scary.”The most important thing to remember during the holidays is what the season is all about.The holidays are a time to bring people together and celebrate each other.If you can maintain a positive attitude and remember these tips, you can avoid becoming a holiday grinch.