Have A Stress-Free Holiday
How To Make The Last Months Of 2021 Your Best Yet
When you think about the holidays, what song comes to mind? I think of It’s The Most Wonderful Time of The Year. This classic carol’s lyrics take me back to my childhood when all I had to worry about was avoiding the naughty list and making sure Santa knew exactly what I wanted in my stocking.
Now as an adult, it’s different. As parents or spouses, we get to experience the joy of the holidays through the eyes of our children or partner. We also get to enjoy the stress of finding that perfect or all-too-often sold out gift, hosting family and friends for the most important feast of the year, and so forth. Thus, the most wonderful time of the year can also be the most stressful time of the year.
So, what can you do to take the stress out of the next couple of months? It’s imperative that you set aside time for yourself, and not get lost in focusing on others. Easier said than done, I know. But it’s okay to give yourself permission to take a walk by yourself. Go ahead and grab a pumpkin spiced latte, lounge on the back porch, and read a book. Making time for you and whatever brings you calm will ultimately make this holiday season better for you and those you love.
Feeling better? Great! Now’s let’s explore other ways you can eliminate stress during the chaos of the holiday season.
But first, when trying to figure out how to eliminate holiday stress, consider the following:
– What causes you the most stress during the holidays?
– What can you do differently this year to remove that stress?
– How awesome would your holidays be if all you had to do was focus on enjoying your family and friends?
What causes our stresses may be different, but I have a feeling that one (or all) of the following stress-inducing scenarios sounds at least somewhat familiar to you. If so, I’ve shared some simple strategies to transform a stressful situation into one of joy.
– The relative who likes to discuss politics, religion, or anything else controversial: This year, avoid the arguments and instead make it fun by using the “swear jar” strategy. Every time one of those subjects is brought up, that person donates $5 to the jar – and the person with the most contributions picks the charity to which the money will be donated.
– Everyone is on their devices and not appreciating all the work you have done for the big day: When this happens, collect everyone’s phones and instead occupy them with a scavenger hunt and series of clues that leads them to their last gifts.
– The stress of having to shop for the perfect gift for everyone on your list: This year, let go of this stress and instead know that despite your best of intentions, they may still return your gifts ... and that’s okay. So perhaps rather than stressing day and night about what to get your teens, for instance, or settling for a gift card, make time to shop with them, either online or in the store. They will appreciate the fact that you want to see the joy on their faces when they pick out exactly what they want.
What else can you do? The easy answer is sleep. Sleep is a vital, often neglected component of every person’s overall health and well-being. It gives your body time to repair and prepare for the next day. Ideally, your body needs between seven and eight hours every night. If you aren’t getting the recommended amount of zzzzs, start with adding just one more hour. This small change can make all the difference in how you navigate the stress of the holidays.
I hope these simple stress-reducing suggestions help you finish 2021 with a smile on your face and less stress in your life.