As we approach the holidays, time is speeding up it seems. Hours feel like minutes, and minutes feel like seconds. There never seems to be enough time in a day, and stress beings to pile on. At a time where we are suppose to be thankful and giving, too many people are angry and overwhelmed. We put so much pressure on ourselves to do the right things and to have the right attitude, which ultimately adds to our stress. It is time to bring relaxation back to the holidays, and here is how:
Holidays or not, procrastinating can only add to stress. During the holidays it is exceptionally important to plan ahead, have a schedule, and stick to it. Grocery lists can be made in advance, and turkeys can be frozen. Start saving for the holidays at the beginning of the year, and have all of your shopping finished before December. The little things can make a big difference, and by planning ahead you can actually enjoy the holiday season rather than dread it.
Let Someone Else Host
Hosting a holiday party or dinner typically means you do all of the work, while your guests sit back and enjoy it. We all have to do our fair share of hosting, but every once in awhile it’s ok to take a break and let someone else host. Be sure to discuss holiday plans early on so no one has to scramble, and be honest with your family about why it just isn’t feasible for you to host this year.
Give yourself a break
We place so many expectations on ourselves for the holidays. “This year everything is going to look just right, I’m going to eat healthy, and my kids will act like angels.” How many years in a row have you said something similar to this? Give yourself a break this year and recognize that not everything will be perfect. No one else expects perfection, and you shouldn’t either. If something does go wrong, don’t feel guilty, but accept what is and allow yourself to still enjoy it.
Quality Family Time
The best part about the holidays is that you finally have extra time to spend with your family. Whether that means your mom and dad, or your best friends who have become family, make time for them to just enjoy the holiday season. Forget high-pressure parties and go ice-skating, bake Christmas cookies, or anything else that is low-key. Whatever it is you love to do, be sure to do it with family.
Get in the holiday spirit
It might seem counter-productive to reducing stress, but getting in the holiday spirit is a great way to slow down and remember what is fun about this time of year. Decorate your home, shop online, or send holiday cards as a way to enjoy the holidays in a low stress environment. By remembering your favorite things about the holidays, you can release any stress and have fun again.
It may seem like an impossible task, but you can have a great holiday season without the typical holiday stress. By following these tips, you are sure to have the happiest of holidays yet.