9 Practical Ways to Diminish Holiday Stress

9 Practical Ways to Diminish Holiday Stress

How do you create happy celebrations and wonderful memories while avoiding holiday stress? The key is preparation!

  1. Prepare your calendar.  Carefully consider your calendar and what holiday events are realistic to add to your schedule. Choose activities that are most important to you first, and then add other options as time permits. Remember, an overloaded schedule is guaranteed to create stress. 
  2. Prepare your budget.  Be realistic about what you can comfortably spend for gifts, decorations, meals, and holiday events. Challenge yourself to make this holiday season credit free! If you do, you will ring in the new year with peace and joy.
  3. Prepare your decorations.  Schedule one of your holiday events as the actual day that you decorate. Involve the entire family, play your favorite holiday music, and enjoy a festive meal. This is a great way to usher in the holiday season and create wonderful family memories.
  4. Prepare your menus.  Plan your meals, and shop in advance. This will ensure you have the items you need on hand, so you are not rushing to the store at the last minute, thus saving you both time and money. How often do you run to the store to pick up just one item and leave with several extras that caught your eye?
  5. Prepare your guest list.  For those events you are hosting, it is best to select your guests and send your invitations out early. Remember, everyone is especially challenged with balancing their schedule at this time of year.
    For those events you are invited to attend, please R.S.V.P. – promptly! It is an honor to be invited to any event and absolutely thoughtless to not R.S.V.P. If you are unable to attend the event, simply thank your host and let her or him know you have another commitment. If you said you will attend, then you must – unless there is a dire emergency. If there is, please promptly call your host. To say you will attend and then be a no-show is simply rude.
  6. Prepare your gifts.  Select gifts based on your budget, relationship, and desire – not pressure or guilt. The best gifts are often the most simple.  Gifts should be personal; people may appreciate a gift card, but no one ever forgets a gift selected just for them.
  7. Prepare your attitude.  Stress and fatigue make it difficult to maintain a positive attitude. Eat healthy meals, get enough rest, exercise regularly, and keep a stress-free schedule. A good attitude is far more enjoyable than a perfectly set table and beautiful meal served by a cranky person.
  8. Prepare your memories.  Find a way to record the holidays. Take photos, videos, scrapbook, or keep a journal. Pause often and really take in the moments.
  9. Prepare your thank you.  Purchase a box of thank-you cards in advance, so you are prepared. And don’t forget the stamps! Look for opportunities to express gratitude to others. There is no better way to end the year and usher in a new one.

“An important key to self-confidence is preparation.”  –Arthur Ashe

 ©2013 What Would Mrs King Do? If you would like to use this article in your newsletter or blog, you may do so. Please include our credit information: Written by Deborah King, What Would Mrs King Do? © Copyright 2013. I would also appreciate it if you would send us a copy for our files to [email protected]

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