Is ADD / ADHD Making Your Holidays Stressful?

by | Dec 17, 2010 | ADHD Symptom Control | 0 comments

easter, holidays, tradition and object concept - close up of colored easter eggs in basket and tulip flowers on wooden table with copy space

The holiday season can stress even the most focused mind. Throw ADD / ADHD into the mix and you have a breeding ground for panic.

Darn all those details! Parties, shopping, wrapping, cooking and all the rest; what’s a scattered mind to do?

What if you made stress a choice, instead of an event? It’s easier than you think.  The trick is to stop stress when you first notice it. How? By tuning in to what I call your stress alarm, your early warning sign that you’re over doing it.

We each react differently to stress. You may get cranky or get a headache. My own stress alarm is yelling at traffic. When I find myself at a red light hollering at other cars, I know it’s time I regain some peace.

What is your stress alarm? If you’re not sure, ask a family member or a close friend. It may be more apparent to them than to you.

Arrest Holiday Stress

When your stress alarm does go off, here are five easy steps to follow to regain control.

Step One. Audibly say STOP! This gets your attention.

Step Two. Take a deep breath and let it out slowly. This calms you down.

Step Three. Notice what you’re feeling, smelling, seeing and hearing. Tuning into your senses takes your mind off what is causing your stress.

Step Four. Determine the source of your stress. Are you hungry? Have you forgotten to take your medication? Are you over-committed or exhausted or angry?

Step Five. Take care of yourself and handle the situation. Get a bite to eat. Take a break or say no to a commitment that isn’t important to you. Yes, this can be hard to do, but if you’re stressing out are you really doing anyone else any favors by ignoring your own needs?

The holiday season CAN be a time of fun, friends and family even for the most scattered among us. Use the Stop technique to arrest your stress before it takes its toll and enjoy the joys of the season.

The Last Word In ADD Success

This Christmas I’ve been in a head to head battle with stress. In my usual “leap and build the parachute on the way down” approach to life I took on a major project right before Thanksgiving; a total overhaul of my web site.

ADD sometimes makes it very hard for me to see beforehand how complicated a project truly will be. I mistakenly thought since I was hiring a web designer my involvement in building the new site would be limited. Was I ever wrong.

On top of my normal client, family and volunteer commitments, I’ve been frantically rewriting web pages and setting links. It’s been hectic and fun and I love the results but I keep wondering why in the world I started this right before the holidays?

I’m happy to report for the most part I’ve kept the upper hand in my tussle with stress (okay, except for a brief crying jag yesterday morning). Like Santa, I’ve been making my lists and checking them twice. I’ve been strategically procrastinating by deciding what must be done now and what can wait. I’ve been asking for as much help from others as possible. And, I’ve been faithful about taking care of myself by going to the gym, eating well and singing with my beloved choir.

Life is good, wild and sweet. There’s nothing like a little adrenaline to keep me focused and on task.

To Your ADD Success,




ADHD does not have to be so hard. You can reach your goals and create the life you dream for. An experienced, professional coach who specializes in ADHD can help you find clarity and success in your personal and professional lives. Learn more about ADD /ADHD coaching and how it can improve your life.


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