From year-end reports due at work to ridiculously long lines at the grocery store, it can feel like the “happiest time of the year” is anything but. So, how does a person balance family gatherings, careers, shopping, and celebrations? Read this list of the eight best ways of how to deal with holiday stress to truly make it a happy experience.
The holidays do not need to be perfect to be enjoyable. If your Thanksgiving table set up doesn't include handmade paper turkey place cards like you saw in the magazine, relax, cupcakes, it's okay. Try to enjoy the day and focus on the people around you - not the details.
Stick To A Budget
One area of worry for many people is the financial stress the holidays can bring. Food, travel costs, and gifts can really drain the bank account. Set a budget and stick to it. This will help you relax knowing you have a plan. Don't try to buy happiness with a mountain of gifts. Take the opportunity to give some family members a heartfelt letter or card.
Don't sweat it. Eat whatever you want but try to do so in moderation. You'll feel more stress trying to stick to a rigid plan when you have hundreds of moments of temptations compared to giving into the temptations, in moderation. Remember Tip #1
Set aside specific days for shopping, baking, visiting family or friends and other activities. Staying organized will not only help you feel like you have it together, but will save time and reduce stress.
Expressing your gratitude can raise your level of appreciation for the things you have in your life that are good - like family, friends, shelter, employment, etc. Take a moment to realize how lucky you are, and help those in need that may have less than you.
Acknowledge Your Feelings
The Holiday season can be a difficult time for people who have lost a loved one or gone through another trial, like a divorce. Realize it is okay if you are feeling sad during this time, and it is okay if you just need to cry or express your feelings to your friends or families. Don't try and force yourself to be happy just because it's a holiday.