Festivals are times to celebrate joyous occasions, prosperity and ring in a more auspicious future. Whether its Diwali, Christmas, Eid or Holi, a festival is supposed to make you feel happy while enjoying togetherness with not just your family, but your community and the world too. So, would you even face any stress or anxiety during the festive season? Yes, you might, and theres no use denying it.Why Stress And Anxiety Show Up During FestivitiesWhether you love the festive season or not, the fact remains that there are a number of stresses and anxieties that get triggered during this time of the year. It could be to do with the stress of getting your house cleaned, painted or renovated before the festivities start. It could be the social anxiety stemming from meeting or catering to the demands of crowds of people, even though they are your family and friends. It could also generate due to anxieties about how you will look, cook or appear. If you are religious, you could also be anxious about performing the right rituals at the right time to garner blessings instead of accidentally doing something wrong. And if you stay away from family or live alone, then festivals can trigger feelings of loneliness and sadness too.The stresses and anxieties we face during the festive season are many, and none of them are good for our health. According to a study published in the Journal of Experimental and Clinical Sciences in 2015, stress can not only give you headaches, migraines, upset stomachs, indigestion, and sleep deprivation, but may also suppress your immune system and increase your vulnerability to other diseases. A 2016 study in the journal Current Psychiatry Reports also suggests that if you already have an anxiety disorder, added pressures can lead to cardiovascular or heart issues too.How To Manage Stress And AnxietyIt must be noted here that no matter which part of the world you live in or what your religion is, the festive blues are quite natural. Over the last year, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been many added stresses and anxieties we have faced during the festive season, globally. Clearly, managing stress and anxiety during the festive season is critical, not just to help you enjoy the festive spirit (as you should), but also to ensure that your long-term mental and physical health remains fine. Wondering how to get started? Check out the tips given below.1. Plan Ahead But Be RealisticYou dont have to go into Monica from FRIENDS mode, but planning ahead can reduce a lot of stress. Every festival includes some essential bits, like cleaning, cooking and giftingso make a schedule to fit all of these in a week in advance. The best part about festivals like Diwali and others is that you know whats traditionally expected on these days, so you can easily execute such plans. However, its critical that you be realistic about these plans. Know your limits while making your plans, otherwise, instead of enjoying the process of organising your festivities, youll only be anxious and strained to meet your unrealistic expectations. And that can only lead to more stress and unhappiness than you need at this time.2. Budget To Avoid Financial StressIt doesnt matter how little or more you earn, festivals can be a strain on your pocket if you dont budget your expenses properly. Most of us end up spending too much around festivals and holidays, forgetting that while its important to have fun on those days, we do have to think about the rest of the month. So, spread out your expenses instead of focusing them in the same month. Make a budget for decorations, food, gifting, travel, etc. and start arranging these well ahead of time. Its also crucial that you avoid temptation as much as possible to keep overspending or reckless buying sprees at bay. Remember, at the end of the day, festivals are about the spirit of togetherness, not material things.3. Manage Others Expectations HonestlyFestivities are about togetherness, but often, we tend to get bogged down by the pressure to deliver according to everyones expectations. This is especially true if youre a woman, even more so if youre a mother. The feeling that you have to cater to everyones desires for certain foods or gifts during a festival can lead to a build-up of stress. Plus there may be expectations that you will host a party, or call up everyone, or do anything else someone wants you to do. While you might think catering to these expectations are part of your festive duties, you are human too. If an expectation is too unrealistic for you to accomplish or add an unnecessary strain on you, tell them honestly and politely. Opening up about your stress and anxiety to meet their expectations is better than them feeling let down or you feeling sad about it later.4. Step Away And Take Care Of YourselfFestivities usually tend to have a building crescendo. As D-Day comes closer, the pressure to execute everything and have the perfect day increases. The flip side is that the essentials of de-stressing and self-care take a nosedive as the crescendo builds. This can only result in you experiencing extreme levels of stress and anxiety on the day of the festival, and then a complete burnout right after it. This is precisely why stepping away from the festive blues for a few hours every day is critical. The three things you should not compromise with at all are food, exercise and sleep. Maintain a schedule for these three basic self-care needs every day, and youll have a stress-free festive seasonor at least have the physical and mental strength to cope with whatever comes your way.5. Have Fun Without OverindulgingYou may have heard of stress eating, but did you know that the risk of doing it around festivals is much higher? Because you are rushing around getting all the work done, you may not take the time out to eat proper meals, and instead go for festive, unhealthy snacking. You may also feel that with all the anxiety youre dealing with and all the work youve done, you deserve to eat all the festive foods you love. But the downside here is that, deep down, you know having fun isnt just about overindulging. In fact, overindulging during a festival is only going to make it worse for you in the next few days, especially if you get indigestion or an upset stomach. So, know your limits, indulge in everything, but make sure the portions are small so that you arent stressed about your health after the festival is over.How do you manage stress during the festive season? Are there any tricks you have? Let us know in the comments below.