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How to de-stress and get into the Holiday Spirit

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December has crept up on us here at JCI, and whispers of gift ideas, holiday parties and family events have been growing louder each and every day. Though we don’t have a traditional school schedule (since classes start year round), students are still feeling the crunch of extra hours at work, busy appointment books, and travel plans combined with their regular class work.

With all of that going on, it can be tricky to de-stress and get into the holiday spirit. Taking a moment to relax, doing something for yourself or reaching out to help others can be a great way to deal with the craziness that is the festive season! Here are our top ideas of how to slow down and enjoy this month:

Bake some cookies


A simple, fun way to spend an afternoon getting your holiday season started is by baking. If you’re no Martha Stewart, pick up some premade cookie dough or even those super convenient pillsbury pre-cut sugar cookies.

Volunteer your time for a good cause


The holidays are all about giving, but sometimes the most impactful gift you can give is your time. Not sure where to start? A tool like helps you search for opportunities in your area. You can also check out the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, Oppenheimer Park Christmas Dinner, or the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre. Keep your eyes out for volunteer opportunities in your field through your Industry Liaison!

Go for a gift exchange or initiate a “second hand” rule for the holidays


This year, talk to your family/friends about changing things up! Instead of excess spending and gift giving, see how they feel about choosing to only give homemade, thrifted or vintage presents.

If you prefer to buy new, a gift exchange means each person purchases only one gift. Once everyone is gathered, you each pick a number out a of a hat, and then choose and open presents in the order. Here’s the catch – once you’ve opened a gift you can either keep it or trade with anyone else who has opened one. Watch out though, anyone with a higher number can take your gift too! It’s a fun and exciting way to cut down on wasteful spending this season.

Make those resolutions early this year


If you’re looking to make some changes or try something you’ve always wanted to – why wait? If you want to go back to school, start a YouTube channel, join a fitness class or find a  new job, you can start making those moves now. This year don’t get stuck in a rut of making New Year’s Resolutions you never keep by already starting them as habits in December.

Relax with a holiday bath bomb


Our favourite are from LUSH and made right here in Vancouver! Choose from many yummy scents and formulas that will pamper your skin.

Do something outside


It’s so easy to just hunker down and hibernate during the winter months, but getting outside in the fresh air can really improve your mood. If you’re feeling active, something like snowshoeing or skiing is great this time of year! Otherwise, try checking out the Vancouver Christmas Market, or even doing some holiday shopping along Robson, in Gastown or on West 4th where you won’t just be stuck inside a mall.

How do you like to enjoy the holiday season? Let us know in the comments or on social media!


(JCI) is widely recognized as the industry leader in providing job-ready training and has been setting the standard for artistry and innovation for over 30 years.

Established in Vancouver since 1978, JCI continues to stand behind top professionals in the areas of fashion, make up, hair and esthetics. With note-worthy careers as award-winning makeup artists, international fashion stylists, skilled spa technicians and cutting edge hairstylists, graduates of JCI continue to shine.

Supportive and positive learning practices provide students with the most beneficial educational experience.

Our faculty is comprised of leading industry professionals and guest instructors from various aspects of their respective fields. Our instructors and graduates continue to win awards and gain recognition for their work and contributions to their industries. Just 1 block down from the Waterfront Station, JCI sits surrounded by cafes, design studios, art galleries and photographers’ studios – the perfect place for students to absorb creativity and find constant inspiration.

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