friends at dinner and how to handle holiday stress as an introvert


Introvert’s guide to the holidays

Ugh. It's another night in December, and your mom just called to remind you about the holiday open house at your aunt and uncle's house this weekend. Honestly, there's nothing you'd rather do less. Your idea of a perfect Saturday afternoon includes a lot less people — and a lot less stress. 

So as an introvert, do you have a holiday survival plan? Try these tips:

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Don't feel like you have to be the center of attention. There are options to remove yourself from the likelihood of having questions thrown at you. For example, if there is a big family dinner planned, sit near someone you feel comfortable with rather than someone you only see once a year. Or help out in the kitchen — if you're busy carrying food or doing the dishes, that gives you a chance to escape the questions.

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Load up on veggies. Stress eating can be OK if you load your plate with crunchy conversation-stoppers. It's nearly impossible to talk if your mouth is full of broccoli.

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Go to a quieter room. If you're at an open house, choose to sit in a smaller room with just one or two people to share a conversation.

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Just say no to parties. You don't have to attend every event that you're invited to. If there was a friend or family member you'd hoped to talk to at a party, arrange to meet them for coffee and talk about what's new since you last saw each other. Sometimes one-on-one talks like this fill you up rather than going to a big party that runs you down.

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Make it low key. Spend some time on you during the busy holiday season. Being in nature can help you break free from holiday stress. Do yourself a favor by getting outside into nature to enjoy the wonders of the winter landscape that you drive by in a hurry on your daily commute.

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It's the most wonderful time of the year. Breathe deeply, watch the snow fall, look at the lights, count the stars and give thanks.

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Chill. It's ok to do regular day-to-day stuff during the holidays, too. So slow down once in a while to catch up on your favorite show or to start a new book.


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Recipe: Turkey, squash and wild rice hotdish

Leftover turkey, butternut squash and wild rice in this recipe produces a satisfying hotdish that's loaded with health benefits. You can even prepare it ahead of time, refrigerate it, then cook it the next day.

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