Christmas can be a magical time of year. It can also be difficult. Family and travel can cause stress and pains, both real and emotional. There are some tricks to thriving this Christmas season.

The first thing: Take time for you. Don’t let the pressure of the season to throw you off from what you need to do. Don’t skip those workouts or other wellness needs. I know you think that you need to re-clean the house again before those visitors arrive but consider this: The only people that judge you are the ones that you don’t want to come back ever. Make sure you are getting those chiropractic adjustments and massage visits.

Second: Remember that this is supposed to be fun. There is no such thing as the “perfect Christmas”. The best Christmas I remember is the one where my wife and I were stuck in the Midwest without family nearby. It was nothing like the Christmases before or after. We ended up eating at a classy Denny’s because an ice storm had kept us from getting to the grocery store. Nothing says Christmas dinner like a Grand Slam breakfast and a waitress that didn’t want to be there. The point is, Christmas (and pretty much anything else in life) is what we make it.

Third: Get adjusted and massaged before and/or after you travel. Loading luggage, driving, flying, and sleeping in random beds are all hard on your body. Get right before you leave and get fixed when you come back. If you want, I’ll even write an official looking letter restricting your activities to watching football and eating treats all Christmas. Your wife might not honor it, but at least we tried.