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Holiday stress. I think we can all agree our goal over the holidays is to avoid it, right?
As much as I love the holidays, I always get caught up in the stress of it all.
Especially with both mine and my husbands family being split. It makes us wonder who to get gifts for, where we’re celebrating and on what days we’re going to be busy. It all starts at Thanksgiving and doesn’t let up until after the new year.
But this year I’ve done some research on how to avoid the holiday stress, or at least minimize it, making for a much happier time of year.
I started with my holiday plans. Learning when to say yes and when to say no are huge game changers when it comes to the holidays and trust me, they’re skills you NEED to learn.
You can’t be saying yes to every invite that comes your way. It’s just not possible. But you also have to be able to prioritize your events and see which you should most definitely attend.
It’s all a game. A very stressful, holiday game.
Here are my top tips I’ve gathered for limiting holiday stress.
* Plan ahead of time
I planned out our entire holiday season back in the beginning of November, and I am so happy that I did. By doing so there are no surprises in our schedule, and we know what we’re doing when. It’s allowed me to relax and have ample time to get things done, but most of all has kept the whole family in check with our plans.
* Think about the kids
But when it comes to making your plans, keep the kids in mind. Will you be out late? What about nap time? Snack or meal time? You have to keep those things in mind to limit holiday stress. The last thing you want is to be out and about and have a meltdown on your hands because the kids are cranky and hungry!
* Set a budget
This is a huge one. Setting your budget defines your whole season. Remember, you don’t need to go broke showing people you care through gifts and such. You also don’t need to go to every expensive light show in your city! Save your coin and plan for what means the most to you.
* Shop online
A huge holiday stress savor? Shopping online. Avoid the huge crowds. Shop all of the sales. There are so many great advantages to shopping online. Buuuut I have to be honest, I don’t actually follow this rule. But shopping also doesn’t stress me out. I went Black Friday shopping and had so much fun! Just keep in mind that if shopping is something that causes you stress- stay HOME! Online shopping is such a huge luxury for us in this generation.
* Don’t go to your crazy relatives house
What causes more holiday stress than anything else? Family. If they cause more bad than good, just stay away. There is no rule that you HAVE to go see your family that causes you major stress during the holidays. No rule whatsoever. Take care of yourself.
* Say NO
Another way to limit the stress is to just say no. This comes with making your holiday plans. You don’t have to do everything and be everywhere. Only say yes to the things that make your heart happy. That you’ll truly benefit from. And keep in mind what plans fall where. That way you’re not over booking yourself. A planner comes in real handy here!
* Watch the booze
Something you might not think about during the holiday hustle and bustle is watching your alcohol intake. I know for me, there seems to be excuse after excuse to drink during the holidays. All of that alcohol really adds up and could do more harm than good. Not only can it cause more stress because now you’re hung over, but it could cause you to feel less than and then you’re left not doing what you truly enjoy!
* Give yourself grace
You’ll find that I say that a lot. To give yourself grace. But thats the motto I live by. You’re not going to be perfect. Even with the perfect list of tips. You just wont be. The holidays are chaotic and it’s hard to stay afloat sometimes.
You must give yourself the grace to be imperfect. Own your flaws. Stand tall with them.
I hope this handful of tips for the holiday season help minimize the holiday stress, and that they lead for a killer holiday season!