The holidays can be merry and bright, but they can just as easily be overwhelming and exhausting. If you find yourself relating more with the later there’s nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, a clear majority of those preparing for holiday festivities will struggle with stress. How am I going to afford to get everyone what they want? Will the family get along this year? How can I host the best holiday party of the year? Why am I not happy? Whatever may be behind the stress you find yourself feeling this holiday season there are helpful tips to implement so that you can breathe a little easier and enjoy the season.
Money is the most frequent cause of stress during the holidays and the best way to combat this stressor is by setting a reasonable budget for everyone you’re getting gifts for. Implementing a spending limit will make you to slow down and think about what the person would really enjoy and use, rather than just buying something off their Christmas List.
There is no such thing as a perfect family and family dysfunction is inevitable – but it is how we work through that dysfunction that matters. Allow yourself to walk away from upsetting conversations and give yourself permission to be alone to decompress and relax. Refocus on the reason for the season and take time to be grateful for the family and friends you do get to see. Embrace the dysfunction the best you can and within your own limits.
Perfection is impossible to achieve, and as long as we hold ourselves to unrealistic standards we will continue to feel overwhelmed with stress. Accept our imperfect party hosting techniques and practice letting go of controlling the entire event. It’s okay to not be able to make it to every holiday party and it is okay if you are unable to see the number of people you were hoping to. Do your best to refocus your mind on the present moment. This will allow you to enjoy being around the loved ones you are able to see and the events you are able to attend or host.
During this time of year, it can be easy to forget about our regular routines even though they are essential to maintaining adequate self-care. Continue eating healthy so that you can enjoy all the holiday sweats without feeling too guilty. Get a good amount of sleep so that you can keep up with the festivities of the season. We have to take care of ourselves so that we can put our best selves forward to our family and friends.
For everyone out there feeling like the weight of the world is on your shoulders this holiday season, take a deep breath and know you’re not alone. If you find yourself unable to cope through the season on your own know that there is no harm in asking for help. Help can come in the form of a trusted family member, friend, or even a therapist. Being brave enough to seek help is just another form of self-care and it is a way to prove to yourself that you do deserve happiness and you’re strong enough to fight for it.
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Author: Megan Carry
Marketing & Creative Manager at Cherish Local