Holidays can be a time of great joy, decking the halls, opening presents and… unfortunately, running around like a chicken with your head cut off. Understandable, as there is a lot to do from the cooking and shopping, to the cleaning, parties and preparing the house for guests…. All while your kiddos are out of school on an extended holiday break! As a result, many people feel stressed and overwhelmed this time of year. This causes them to miss out on the true reason for the season. Try these quick tips to distress and enjoy this holiday season with those who matter most to you.
- Plan Holiday Activities
Planning out all of your family’s holiday activities is key to staying stress free. Make a calendar for the holidays and write down the various events your family has scheduled, so you can stay on track and keep your stress level to a minimum.
- Be Flexible
Even though the holidays require a lot of planning, it’s important that you still try to stay flexible. If you become too rigid with your schedule, you’ll add excess stress on yourself. Accept changes when they happen, and adapt to help the stress roll off your back.
- Be Realistic
If you think that your holiday season is going to be perfect or are trying to meet some extravagant expectation, then you are fooling yourself. Be realistic with your idea of the holidays and don’t overanalyze or over-imagine any part of it. Go with the flow and keep your expectations on a realistic level.
- Schedule in Alone Time
Do not plan every single waking hour of each holiday. Instead, be flexible with your schedule and make sure you have some alone time. Take time to recharge and stay focused. If you burn out early on during the holiday season, then the rest of the holidays will be miserable for you.
- Be Financially Savvy
Finances are one of the biggest stressors during the holidays. Cooking dinner, decorating your home, buying gifts and traveling all adds up, and unless you have budgeted throughout the year for the holidays, you may be in a bit of trouble. Consciously budgeting your money can reduce your stress level and ensure that you don’t over stress about debt.
Exercise is a great way to keep your mood up and the extra holiday pounds off. By walking, running, doing yoga or participating in any of your favorite aerobic activities, you can sweat off the stress and keep your mind clear, happy and focused.
If you have family members that are willing to help out during the holidays, by all means, let them (this includes the kiddos). Never try to take on everything yourself; by delegating jobs to other people you can take some of the stress off of yourself.
- Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Open up the doors to communicate your thoughts, your plans, your expectations, your needs, your wants.. and invite the rest of the family to do the same. This can help you distress and allow you all to be on the same page.
- Go Ahead and Act Like A Kid Again
When was the last time you built a gingerbread house or cut out snowflakes for your window?! Getting back into the spirit of the holidays can bring back great memories as well as spark inspiration in your family. Invite them to join you in welcoming joy and cheer into your home.
- Take on less…
Even if you’re an amazing multi-tasker, taking on too much during the holidays can make you feel frenzied, over stressed and under-joyed! It’s okay to say no.
Remember: Holiday stress can be contagious. If you are stressed out, then it will likely affect your kids, your other family members and even your friends. To stay stress free during the holidays, follow these tips and make it a season to be jolly.
Happy Holidays to You & Your Family!