As we move through the holiday season, we may find ourselves going to party after party, attending a multitude of festive events and activities, and spending lots more time around friends and family.

This inclination to stuff our December calendars fuller than we stuff our kids’ stockings may certainly seem fun at the time.

However, the reality of a heavily booked schedule during the holidays can often leave us feeling out of sorts.


Because even though we think we’re doing things that bring us joy, they can actually leave us feeling dysregulated.

Learn the Difference Between Adrenaline & Joy

Have you ever experienced a social situation where you’re laughing and having fun, then all of a sudden you’re not having fun anymore? Suddenly you feel anxious, over-stimulated, or completely drained?

This can be the effect of adrenaline. Adrenaline is released into our bodies when we experience a strong emotion (like excitement!), which causes our hearts to beat faster and gives us a temporary boost of energy. Sounds great for a party right?

The problem is that when the adrenaline rush wears off, we can start to feel shaky, weak, tired, anxious, dizzy, nauseous, or even find ourselves with a headache. That comedown part? Definitely not so great.

Joy, on the other hand, is the feeling of great happiness and pleasure without the negative aftereffects. This is the bliss that leaves you feeling filled up with warmth and happiness afterwards.

Notice how you feel after your social gatherings this season.

Paying attention to the messages that our bodies are giving us, is a huge way that we can all take good care of ourselves during the holiday season (and always).

So the next holiday invitation you get, pause before you commit.

Your first inclination might be to say “YES!” because “Tis the season!”, “YOLO (You Only Live Once)“, or maybe you’ve come down with a case of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out).

But before you give your yes, ask yourself – “Is this something that will bring me true joy?” If so, then by all means – give your YES with resounding confidence.

But if you feel like you’d be saying yes just because you’re caught up in the whirlwind of never-ending activities going on, and what would REALLY bring you joy is a quiet night at home with a bubble bath and your favorite book?

Then maybe, just maybe, consider saying “No” this time.