It’s that time of year again. A time of celebration, family gatherings, holiday parties, gifting, traveling, and most of all, excitement. While many of us are thrilled and looking forward to the holiday season, that excitement is generally accompanied by STRESS. Stress to pick out the perfect dish, give the perfect gift, maintain a spotless house, show up to every party, and decorate our homes like Martha Stewart. So here’s a few tips to help you keep your holiday stress under control, so you can enjoy what the holidays are truly about.
Acknowledge what’s got you stressed: While there is a plethora of things that can be feeding into our high stress levels during this time of year, take the time to really focus in on the main cause of your stress. This will help you to pinpoint the problem and face it head on and hopefully early on. This may take a few moments of quiet time away from the everyday hustle and bustle of life. What does your mind continuously go back to? What is preventing you from being able to focus? Chances are that may be one of the main causes of your stress. This is where you will need to make the decision whether to take it on, cut back, or step away. Is it that you know family will be visiting in just a few weeks, and you haven’t had time to tackle your family room for deep cleaning? Is it an outdoor project you’ve been working on for most of the year and you can’t muster up an answer for when Uncle Jim asks why you still haven’t finished it? Take it on. Make a specific goal for yourself with time frames and arrange for the project to be finished. Or realize that other people’s opinions don’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Is it that you have spread yourself too thin, and you have no idea how you are going to be able to keep up your weekly volunteer session at the local food bank along with your other commitments? Cut back on your hours or those other commitments. People will understand. Is it that every year you take the time to make individual place settings unique to each family member, but there is no way you will be able to complete the settings along with all your other commitments? Step away,