How High Expectations Create Holiday Stress (VIDEO)

12/13/2013 01:22 pm ET
  • HuffPost Live

The holidays are a time of great cheer and intense stress.

The parties, the family gatherings and the pressure to buy the perfect gift for everyone on our Christmas lists can be cause for lots of anxiety. At the root of that tension is our too-high expectations about every celebration going off without a hitch.

When those holiday pressures boil over, the body sees increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol, according to Doni Wilson, author of "The Stress Remedy."

"For some people, [cortisol] affects in mental symptoms, like worry or extra anxiety. And for other people it shows up in physical symptoms, such as headache or digestive stress," she said.

See the full conversation about managing stress during the holidays at HuffPost Live HERE.

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