CHRISTMASSHOPPING

Try this simple remedy to combat seasonal stress

There’s so much to do over the holidays, it’s no wonder we start feeling overwhelmed.  |  Richard A. Chapman/Sun-Times

It’s so easy to be racing about from one activity to another during this hectic time of year.

Well, I inadvertently discovered a way to slow myself down. It might work for you, too.

I visited a dermatologist after the skin on one — just one — of my fingers cracked and wouldn’t heal. She gave me an ointment and recommended one other treatment. At least once a day (twice would be wonderful), the doctor advised I lather on a hand lotion and then put on a pair of cotton gloves. Keeping them on about 10 minutes also was suggested.

I wasn’t interesting in doing the second part of the remedy. But when the ointment alone wasn’t working, I knew I had to listen to her and don a pair of gloves.

It’s working, but here’s something else I discovered. With the gloves on, I can’t tap or scroll through my phone or tablet. They’ll get dirty if I’m wearing them and trying to multi-task and do chores. It works best if I put them on and then just sit there.

Green Gloves

Me and my green gloves. 

At first, this was difficult. Like most of us, I am used to being in constant motion. Sitting still wasn’t all that enjoyable when I knew I had so much to accomplish.

The more I do this though, the more I let myself just sit back. I don’t sit and think about what else I have to do; I just relax.

And you know what? Not only is my lone finger getting better (and the rest of my digits and hands are oh-so-soft), but I am looking forward to this little break. It’s just the sort of respite I need when there’s so much to do. I feel re-energized afterward, ready to tackle my tasks, but not feeling as stressed as before.

Give it a try. At the very least your hands (where the skin gets so dry in winter) will thank you.