How to Recover from Stressful Family Events

They say that you can choose your friends but you can’t choose your family. There is no doubt that family events are some of the most stressful occurrences in the life of any family member. In fact, the “not so popular” opinion is that family gatherings such as the ones that take place during the holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, and so on) are some of the most stressful life events today. 

One of the biggest problems is that skipping them isn’t often a very welcomed choice. Not only will that lead to more questions from your family but it will also end up being more pressure. It’s no wonder that most people still attend these family gatherings despite them being stressed and sometimes even borderline depressed by these events. 

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What About Family Fun?

Truth be told, there are some events that we simply must attend while there are others that we choose to attend. Take a family vacation, for example. It’s the dream of many parents to take their families on a week-long vacation to the Bahamas every now and then. As much fun as these family events can be, they still come with their own set of problems and stressors. As such, there is often much need for parents and children as well to find ways to recover from these events. Sometimes you just need to recover from a week-long family fun trip with your kids. 

Tips on How to Recover from the Stress that Comes with Family Fun Trips

If you just came back from a long vacation with your spouse and the kids, you may be looking for ways to decompress after your week-long break. Here are some tips that might help.

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1. Take Some Time for Yourself

When you are busy running around trying to make sure the kids don’t eat too much candy, jump into the deep end of the pool or accidentally knock over an expensive work of art at the hotel, it’s difficult to take the time to actually just relax. Family vacations, contrary to common belief, can actually be more stressful to the parents. So, once you come back and are all settled into the usual life routine, it’s best to take some time off for yourself. Do the things you like to do:

  • Go for a spa date. 
  • Try a nice restaurant. 
  • Go for a night out on the town. 

Whatever it is you like to do to decompress, try to schedule it in as soon as possible until you feel as though you have re-centered. 

2. Take it Slow for a Bit 

According to psychologists, our brains and bodies were designed to follow a certain system: go through a stressful event then take some time off to rest and recover before facing the next stressful event. Today, however, we hardly give ourselves time to recover as we try to juggle a myriad of stressors all at one go. 

You need to make a deliberate effort to recover from a stressful event. Try to shut down for a little while and do something relaxing such as watching your favorite series, spending time with a partner, or enjoying your favorite food. 

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3. Exercise

Although it might seem like more work to some people, exercise is actually one of the most relaxing things you could do when you are stressed. The health benefits of exercise have been widely documented, especially it’s positive effects on stress. Take the time out to go for a jog, a swim, or even a leisurely walk. Strenuous exercise such as running will help release chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin (known as the “feel-good” hormone) which can help make you happier and more relaxed. 

4. Try to Get More Sleep

Even though you were on vacation, there is a good chance that you really weren’t sleeping as much as you could have been. If you have kids, sleeping with them in the same room can prove challenging between noises made at night or the little ones waking up when the sun rises. Or perhaps another family member snores. If went on a lot of excursions you may be wound up. Or if you did a nightcap at the bar, drinking alcohol can disrupt good sleep. Now that you are back home, make time for more, quality sleep to help you relax. 

5. Engage in Known Relaxation Techniques

Have you ever thought of trying yoga? How about hypnosis? Maybe even acupuncture? There are very many different relaxation techniques that you could try to ensure that you relax not only your body but your mind as well. The most common technique is to go for a massage. You could also try out some self-affirming mantras such as “Grant me serenity” or “I deserve peace and calm in my life.” All these are things that could help you get more relaxed. 

Bottom-line, if you are going to recover from a family fun event, you will have to be deliberate with your efforts to do so. These tips will help you achieve that or at the very least, get you underway. 

Tips provided by E. Johnson. Photos: Sourced from sites with free photo rights.

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