20 Tips for a Stress-Free Family Holiday Month
Every year you think that Christmas or family holiday month will be a swirl of thrilled parties, decorating the trees, cozy crafting, surprising people with gifts, cooking delicious meals, and spending quality time with loved ones. But, every year, you remember that reality doesn't meet perfectly with dreams.
Different challenges thrive at this time of the year for the celebration and fun, so you must have some Christmas and family holiday tips to get you through it all.
Consider the challenge of getting your house ready for guests. There's another challenge of travel – with airports more hectic than ever amid the ongoing pandemic. Then there's the budgeting, shopping, and more coming your way.
Amid all this excitement, you might need some coping techniques to keep it all on track during the holiday season. From packing hacks to self-care rituals, here's our guide to managing holiday month stress.
If you're habitual in following a to-do list, schedule some time for your self-care. Make sure to put it on the top of your to-do list. Maybe that's 30 minutes of exercise, a phone call to a friend, or a refreshing bubble bath.
If you're feeling overwhelmed or hopeless by the news, take a break from it. Change the channel with some soothing content. Listen to music instead of the bleak news. If you scroll late at night, try rearranging your phone's settings to block such sites.
Not all family members and loved ones will have the same approach to COVID safety protocols. They have different approaches, such as masking or staying outdoors during holiday celebrations. You can make an environment that increases comfort and reduces awkwardness for all parties through proper planning. "It's great to consider precautions when planning family and friend gatherings this holiday season," says Dr. Caroline Leaf, mental health expert. "As different people experience different risks and have different risk tolerances, I would suggest sharing your holiday plans with your loved ones to avoid tension."
The power of positivity changes your brain's response, relieves stress, and stimulates happiness. Try repeating some positive affirmations like, "I'm in the right place," "Every day is a good day," or "I'm deliberate and afraid of nothing."
>"Many people feel guilty when taking a break because our society consistently tells us that we are valuable when we work," Dr. Leaf says. And here, she points to professional work and a culture that admires busyness. You should refrain from keeping yourself busy in this mindset, especially during the holiday season. Don't think you can only take an hour or afternoon off from the task. Just close your eyes to rest and peace.
You're busy with multiple tasks when the holiday season is around the corner. Meanwhile, it's not your duty to see everyone. Cut these unnecessary obligations if you need to prepare for an event or if social activities drain rather than excite you. "We should balance our time with people and conversations while setting our boundaries," Dr. Leaf says.
Nobody is perfect, neither be patient and forgiving of yourself and others. You can control your emotions and lessen stress by managing what makes you upset.
Not everyone feels comfortable running store to store for the ideal gift or attending holiday festivities this year, so practice mindfulness and understanding towards others. Accept family members and friends the way they are, even if they don't meet your expectations.
Research shows the happiest are those who connect with others and build significant relationships. The brain is for human connection, and we feel pleasure when we're valued as part of a group. Therefore, spend less time on screen and build connections with your loved ones.
You need to make a change. Take a task that drives you crazy during these holidays and try to handle it in a new method. A fresh approach can make a huge difference. For instance, if you're tired of sending holiday cards, enlist your partner or child and split the list.
Take some time to unwind yourself. Engaging in your favorite activity, walking, reading a journal, and practising self-care can reduce stress and make you feel fresh.
“Don’t always go for “bigger is better ." while planning your holidays, says Loretta LaRoche. Spend as much as you can easily afford. Expensive things won't change the spirit of holidays
That dozen holiday invitation cards must be mailed as soon as possible, but the thought of it gives you a writer's cramp? "Refocus on what is most important to you," says Linda Hedberg. If you're overwhelmed with piles of cards to send out, decide the most ten important ones." Send them an invitation and put the rest on the back burner. You can also send them e-cards, and it's okay. It saves you money that you can donate to charity on behalf of your recipients and inform them in the e-card.
If you're traveling by car, make sure it's in good working condition by checking hoses, belts, fluid level, and air pressure, says Jerry Cheske. Contact your state police agency or auto club regarding road closing or conditions.
Spend less money and effort on things; instead, share the experience. A multi-generational outing will be suggested for years, but things will always change into clutter, which becomes trash. Therefore, forget about the stuff, and share a new adventure instead.
Donna Wallace found that mindfully adding, rather than deleting, something from her to-do list made her Christmas feel less hectic. One year, she joined the church choir to sing with others in praise and celebration of the season. "It grounds you to acknowledge the spiritual side," she says.
Guests prefer small tasks instead of standing around while you try to do everything yourself. Ask an older family member if they can greet guests at the main door. Ask teens to take coats or offer fruit juices to guests. Kids may also direct guests to the buffet table. Not only does it help you, but it also empowers the whole family.
It's worth it to brave the cold — mainly because you don't have to stay out too long to get the advantages, says sport and exercise psychology consultant Gregory Chertok. Heading outdoors to exercise is more pleasant than inside, and you'll feel a kick in your mood after just five minutes.
As you participate in trimming the tree or preparing cookies, take a deep breath and savor the moment. Allow yourself to forget the tasks still left on your to-do list.
The holiday is the time of year when indulgence abounds. Along with parties, gifts, and decorations, it is associated with food. “People aren’t used to eating out for so many meals or having a full buffet of food readily available during this time of year,” says Rachel Goldman. It can be easy to get so caught up in celebratory feasts that we lose track of balanced meals and other healthy eating habits.