10 tips for keeping holiday stress to a minimum
Sometimes we let the madness of the holiday season get to us. There are gifts to buy, family to see, meals to cook and desserts to eat. As we approach the holiday season here are 10 tips for keeping it real and keeping stress to a minimum.
1) Remember to breathe. Seriously – take time every day to focus, close your eyes and breathe in and out calmly. This should only take 2 minutes out of your day.
2) The holidays are about family and giving. When you’re standing in line and the internal rage starts bubbling over because cashiers are working too slowly, remind yourself what the season is actually about.
3) Laugh. If you don’t have kids go find some to hang out with for a few hours. Kids remind us playing is essential and that life isn’t as serious as we thought.
4) Be prepared. Get your shopping done before December. Start a list and attack it early. Admittedly it’s too late to pull this one off but bare it in mind for next year.
5) Minimize driving. Attempt transit or walk to local shops to get what you need.
6) Don’t spread yourself too thin. We can’t be in all places at all times. There’s plenty of family and friends to visit over the season but it’s okay to be selective. Spend time with the ones that really matter. Don’t attempt to hit every party and be all things to all people unless that’s your version of bliss.
7) Create a budget and stick with it. Busting your budget causes undue stress.
8) Gift yourself. Take an hour for a massage, a quiet walk, read a book, light a candle – anything that gives to you! This is the one time of year you have a little extra time. Ensure you use some of it just for you.
9) Spread some love around. Call a friend you haven’t called in months, write a personalized letter and send it through snail mail. Tell someone how much they mean to you. Bring some cookies to the neighbours. Indulge in a random act of kindness in any capacity.
10) Spend time with people not money. Sometimes we stress about getting the right gift or being the perfect host when in the end all people want is our undivided presence. Slow down, put your phone down for a bit and be in the moment.
Lastly, remember stressed is desserts spelled backwards. When in doubt have that extra slice of cake or shortbread and don’t sweat the small stuff.
Have a safe and happy holiday season!