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'The Business of Health Care Report'

Encourage Employees to Avoid Holiday Stress

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I’m Doug Hawthorne, CEO of Texas Health Resources, with “The Business of Health Care Report.”

The holidays are a joyous time of year, but they also can be very stressful. Between party planning, shopping, cooking, travel, cleaning and entertaining, it’s easy to stretch yourself too thin and rob yourself of simple enjoyments.

As an employer, I like to remind my staff to focus on the joys of the season and take steps to manage stress. I encourage you to do the same. Here are some helpful tips you can share with your employees to prevent and manage holiday stress:

  • Give yourself permission to not be perfect. When expectations are high, disappointment often follows.
  • Set reasonable expectations with your family and friends for how much time and money you can commit this holiday season.
  • Do something kind for someone else.
  • Give yourself a budget and stick to it. Plan ahead and give yourself more than enough time for preparation. After all, for many families, half the fun of having a big family dinner is preparing it.

And most importantly, take some time off and relax. Americans gave back 448 million unused vacation days in 2010, according to a survey by That’s about $67 billion worth of time. Taking time off will not only help you rest and rejuvenate, it will help you to be less stressed and more productive when you return to work.

So this holiday season, take some time for yourself and your family.

For our faith-based family of hospitals — Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Arlington Memorial — I’m Doug Hawthorne.

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