It's The Most Stressful Time Of The Year

It's The Most Stressful Time Of The Year

"'Twas the night before the holiday season, and all through the house, my stress levels were rising, and I couldn't calm down."

The holidays have arrived, and in typical fashion, much sooner than anyone expected.

For some reason, life becomes far more stressful and complicated. Suddenly, you have six exams, your work schedule turned your eight hours of sleep into four, you've got to start shopping for presents for everyone, and you haven't got a second to catch your breath.

I'm not sure what it could be that causes all of this stress. One minute, you've got everything under control, and the next it's all gone downhill. The holidays are supposed to be a happy and joyous time to spend with family and friends, full of laughter and cheer, not stress and breakouts and hair-pulling.

I remember being a kid and counting down the days until winter break. I'd sleep in, catch up on some reading or video games, and watch all the family come to my house to celebrate the holidays. Now, I'm cramming for exams, working more days than are in a week, shopping for Christmas presents with the money I haven't made yet, and trying to plan a holiday with my significant other.

Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we stress to the point that we just want to skip the holidays altogether? I'm dreading the drive home, but I'm looking forward to seeing my family, but at the same time, I want all of this insanity to be over. I haven't had the chance to sit back and think about what I want to do for the holidays. I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to try to make it to work and family functions while on my so-called winter break.

Holiday stress is so real that the Mayo Clinic has given a 10-step process for coping with holiday stress. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) shared statistics on holiday stress, which just further proves that this is one of the most stressful times of the year for a lot of people.

The year is rapidly coming to an end, and with it, is my patience. I've snapped at my dog for scratching too loudly. I've forgotten that I need to eat three times a day. I'll take a shower and dry off, and realize that I never even washed myself. It's like the holidays suck out all of my energy and leave me with nothing, because I'm grown now and have a lot more responsibilities to take care of before I can enjoy myself.

This holiday season has proven to be even more stressful than the last. There are leases to sign, classes to register for, dogs to bathe, clothes to pack, gifts to buy, apartments to clean, exams to take, and I'm still expected to smile and act happy because, oh, the holidays are here! I'm feeling more than exhausted, I'm feeling drained of the holiday spirit.

Maybe things will cool down once I'm home and with my family, having myself a nice, home-cooked meal, surrounded by lively decorations and good vibes. But I know I'm not the only one that's feeling this holiday stress.

Green Day should have changed the song lyrics to "wake me up, when the holidays end."

Cover Image Credit: Gorton Community Center

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Valentine's Day is Stupid, and I'll Stand By That

I am not going to pay more attention to heart-shaped lollipops than I am my assignments

Sure, it might be fun to give or receive presents or eat lots of half-priced candy the day after, or do something big and grand to show someone you care. That’s not why this day is stupid.

February 14th is just a date for me. I don’t believe that we need a day to celebrate our loved ones when we should just be doing that every day.

I don’t believe I should be any more excited for Valentines’ Day than I am any other Wednesday, because I have classes to attend, things to do, and assignments to complete.

I have more going on this semester than I imagined I would, I’m overwhelmed, and I’m not going to be able to give anything the attention it deserves if I am more focused on finding heart-shaped lollipops and a cute outfit than I am about keeping my meteorology grade up.

I don’t have a significant other this Valentines’ Day, and I’m sure this article comes off super bitter and the classic “Well, she’d like Valentines’ Day if she had a boyfriend or girlfriend.”

Still no. I had an amazing Valentines’ last year. My boyfriend brought me food at my dorm, despite me being sick, and we watched movies and cuddled and had a very sweet evening together.

Even so, he was home by 9, because I still had work to do and he had a job to get to early the next morning. We had priorities that we put ahead of a long, complicated night of romance. We decided to celebrate when it worked for both of us, not because it was the so-called “Day of Love” that everyone else was celebrating on.

And I gave him whatever illness I had, so there was that unhappy fact (and I told him I was sick, so don’t think I’m crazy for letting him come over).

I don’t want to criticize people who are out celebrating AT ALL. I can appreciate all the cute things people do for each other and the idea that this is an elevation, a way of making things magnified and fun and a chance to do something special. I just think that, for the most part, the things people are doing for the holiday are essentially the same as they could do any day, and they don’t need to take the opportunity to make THIS day any more stressful and complicated than any other day.

My point is that I don’t think we need Valentines’ Day to tell us our love is valid. I don’t think we need this day to prove any point about us having a life or being able to make plans. I can celebrate Galentines with my friends anytime I want (and I did, February 9th, when nothing was super expensive for the holiday yet).

In fact, I’ll probably celebrate the day a few times. A few weekends. A few months, in little memories and the ordinary times I am sharing with the people around me.

Cover Image Credit: The Office-isms

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5 Things You Think If You're Single on Valentine's Day

I don't know the last time I went on a Valentine's Day date.

Valentine's Day: the day that makes you feel the most loved but can also make you feel the most alone.

Even though your father sends you the most beautiful bouquet or your mom gives you your favorite chocolate, you still wish you had that special someone who you could have a night out with, but here you are. You're in for the night, watching your favorite romantic comedy and eating all the chocolate that your mom got you. However, you're not alone.

Plenty of people during this stupid day of Valentine's Day don't do or have anyone, and they're completely okay with it. You should be too, but if you love being bitter on the day of February 14th, then you're probably thinking these things:

1. Love is stupid

It's only stupid if you're not in love because if you were, you definitely wouldn't be having these thoughts.

2. I hate everyone

Why is everyone in love? Who made up this holiday? Why are people shoving their relationship in my face? I don't care how many years you've been dating.

3. I only need my dog/cat

They'll love you more than you'll know and that's the only type of positive relationship that you need.

4. Who needs a boyfriend when you have Barefoot wine?

It'll treat you better than any guy you've been with and will only leave you hurting for a day.

5. Hopefully, I'll have someone next year

Even if you don't want to admit it, having someone on next year's Valentine's Day would make you so much happier than drowning your tears in wine and chocolate.

Just remember all of us single people are in the same boat as yourself, and we'll get through this so-called "holiday" together.

P.S.: hope you enjoy this GIF of Nick Jonas

Cover Image Credit: Savannah McGuire

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