5 Tips for Holiday Stress Management – A Guide for Students from Direct Placements

5 Tips for Holiday Stress Management – A Guide for Students from Direct Placements

Winter break is right around the corner. For many students, this is an excellent opportunity to take the time off from studying and be with family and friends.

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However, for some, this break between semesters can be a battle with a different league of stress. Think of last-minute holiday shopping, out of control spending, endless preps for parties, food and alcohol overindulgence, and dealing with unwanted guests and comments during family gatherings.

If going home for the holiday is not putting you in a festive mood, we have some tips you can apply to help you navigate the challenges ahead and enable you to enjoy the season with people who matter. Direct Placements 5 tips for holiday stress management

Advice is to set your priorities

Between now and the holidays, there seems to be a lot of things that need to be done. To avoid getting overwhelmed by tasks and prevent the mad scramble, set your priorities straight in advance. List down all the stuff you want to accomplish and scrape out the unnecessary ones. It is also a good idea to keep the activities that you enjoy, as they will make you feel energized and keep your stress hormones down.

Get enough sleep

You might feel like you can live off five hours of sleep or even less, but you might want to rethink your sleeping habits, particularly during the holidays. Times like these are often emotionally-charged and require you to spend more energy than you would on a normal day, especially if you are an introvert. If you are not well-rested, you may end up becoming irritable and anxious, which can put a damper on another people's mood.

Make sure you are prepared for all the hustle and rush of emotions that are about to go down. Unplug your devices at least 30 minutes before bedtime to foster calm and try getting at least 7 to 7 ½ hours of sleep so you will feel refreshed and happy the following day.

Be present and make contact

When was the last time you have sat down with your family or friends to listen to their stories and share yours? If it has been a while, take at least a day or two during the holidays to catch up and have a good conversation. This is a powerful way to reconnect with those you love.

You may also use your break as an opportunity to do some philanthropic work. After all, the holiday is all about gift-giving. You do not have to do something extravagant to impact the lives of others. Something as simple as bringing home-made food to your local nursing home, gifting toys to children in a long-term care facility, or reaching out to someone at a crisis shelter can make a big difference to you and to the people who will benefit from your gift.

Avoid overindulging on food

We all know that food is one of the best parts of the holiday season. From mom's roasted turkey and pig in blankets to grandma's trifle and mince pies, it is hard to resist the temptation and not overindulge. However, this is not the time to throw out all your health goals nor is it the time to avoid eating as well. Do not let the celebrations weaken your mindset about making healthy choices. Eat what you love but do so in moderation. You should also consider eating food items that are unique to the season and forego those you can have access year-round. By doing any of these, you will not have to derail your lifestyle and stress over eating too much later.

Get out and exercise

Holiday break is a time when you tend to become lethargic and burrow into your room because of all the food, alcohol, and emotions. This affects your body and mind by making you gain weight and making you feel down. Do yourself a favor by going outside and move. A little bit of fresh air and extra exercise can go a long way toward helping you perk up and beat the holiday blues and bulge.

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You Are NOT Enough

We will never be enough, but God is always more than enough.

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Society and even the church seem to constantly encourage us with the saying "You are enough," and their intentions behind this statement are totally innocent. Something about this phrase has always bothered me, though, but I never understood why. In a sermon I heard one Wednesday night a week or so ago, the verses Proverbs 30:7-9 were used, and these verses stood out to me in a big way.

Proverbs 30:7-9

7 "Two things I ask of you, Lord;
do not refuse me before I die:
8 Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
9 Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, 'Who is the Lord?'
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.

The speaker was specifically focusing on verses 7-8, but the Holy Spirit kept drawing me to verse 9, even days and weeks after. So I decided to dig into it. This verse focuses on Agur (the speaker in the passage) and his tendency to sin. When he asked God to provide "only [his] daily bread," and then when he continued on to speak about the specific sins he was afraid of committing, Agur was completely and wholly surrendering his struggles with temptation and sin to God, because Agur knew he couldn't do it on his own.

Aren't we all like Agur? Because we are human, we mess up all the time and fall into sin more than we would like to admit, and many times because of this, we fall into guilt and shame. This is because, on our own, we aren't enough. If we were enough on our own, we wouldn't sin. If we were enough on our own, we would be able to save ourselves. If we were enough on our own, we wouldn't need God. But none of those statements are true, are they? In fact, it is the exact opposite because God is enough, he calls us out of sin. Because God is enough, He sent Jesus to save us from our sin. Because God is enough, He is with us in every situation because we call to Him.

How do we know that we aren't enough? Because no one is!

Every human sins, even great heroes of faith. David, one of the most well-known biblical figures: the one who killed Goliath and one of the ancestors of Jesus Christ, said in Psalm 51:5--

Surely I was sinful at birth,
sinful from the time my mother conceived me.

The beauty in realizing that you aren't enough on your own is that you don't have to be! Never in the Bible does God call us to be "enough!" He never expected us to be enough because it is impossible. God does call us to depend on Him, though. This is because God is ultimately more than enough. When we depend on God to help us keep away from sin and put in the work necessary to keep away from sin, it will be much easier. We will never be enough, but if we continuously search for our identity in worldly things and not Christ, we will be upset when we realize that we are not enough. Guess what, though, when we find our identity in what Christ says about us, we will find peace and hope because just like 2 Corinthians 12:9 says:

9 But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

God is the only one who is enough. When we depend on God for everything we will begin to see that HE is enough, and that's all we need.

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Exclusive Interview With Soul Singer December Rose

Exclusive Interview With Soul Singer December Rose

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Soul Singer Rosie La Posta who goes under the moniker of December Rose releases the ballad Hanging On. Finding a vocal style of her own, she hits all the notes effortlessly. You can hear past influences but she still keeps contemporary. Think Andra Day'smega smash Rise Up. As far the inspiration behind the song, Rosie says, "Besides the grief of a crumbling relationship, the hardest part in moving on is realizing neither person ever really closed the door. 'Hanging On' really paints the melancholy of the process." She first made waves her first single "Ball Game" which received a New Artist Spotlight award and was featured on AOL/Slacker Radio's "New Pop First" channel. Give it a stream.

Can you tell us a bit about your new song Hanging On?

For sure! So 'Hanging On' is about the "elephant in the room" everyone is ignoring. The relationship is crumbling, no one's letting go and closing the door to that chapter in their lives. The song carries listeners through the reminiscing sweet encounter and desperate plea for truth to set them free.

How would you describe your sound?

Always the hardest question to answer!! haha With all the new music I've been working on, there's been a huge musical maturation. With that said, there is a lot of influence of different genres, but to keep it simple, I'd say Adele meets One Republic, meets Gavin DeGraw, meets Amy Winehouse.

What's your song writing routine like?

This has evolved a ton over the years and still haven't really found a routine. My most creative moments are usually in the mornings, in the shower, and while on public transit around the city. Super random!!! I think on average these are the times my mind has the freedom to just think about anything. So, little melodies or song concepts might come to mind, or lyrics. Sometimes on a great day, all of these things come together at the same time. Little by little I build it. I don't force the song to come together in one day if it's not there. I let the idea "sit on the slow cooker" until it's ready (can be super quick or super long).

Are you playing any shows soon?

With the holidays approaching, no shows for the rest of 2018, but booking for 2019 already so all that information will be up on my website shortly. (https://www.DecemberRoseMusic.com)

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