Coping with holiday stress is a huge concern for many people. Many people try to pack months worth of activities into just 6 short weeks. Most individuals admit to having stress directly related to this time of year. For mental and physical health reasons, coping with holiday stress is very important. In fact, there are four holiday stress-inducers that you can try eliminating to make your holiday season actually feel like a holiday:
- Doing too much in too little time. It’s easy to fall into the trap of trying to do more in the same amount of time. Unfortunately, the holiday season doesn’t grant us any more hours in our days. This year consider putting on hold some of your family’s activities during the holidays in order to accommodate the increases in your schedule. Things like your child’s piano lessons or your book club will easily resume after the holiday.
- Having unrealistic expectations. Do you try to address greeting cards, do all your baking and finish up your shopping in just a few days? To quote Dr. Phil: “How’s that workin’ for you?” Instead, start your holiday preparations early. Things such as addressing greeting cards, stocking up on groceries for the holidays or doing the majority of your baking can be done in October or November.
- Going into debt. Keep a close eye on those credit cards. Spending money you already have in your checking account will help you avoid additional debt and those January blues that come in the mail in the form of credit card statements.
- Sticking to traditions. If truth be told, some traditions bring on stress and aren’t even enjoyable anymore. Maybe this is the year you choose an artificial tree versus cutting one down yourself or maybe you decide to decorate your home with only half the decorations you normally do.
Strategizing against the causes of stress will bring more order, calm and peace into your day. Just by coping with holiday stress you’ll have more enjoyable memories of the entire holiday season.