1. Keep it Simple: Much of our stress comes from trying to do too much or too fancy. If this is you – decide on a simpler menu, less decorations, and less accepted invitations. Focus on the experience you want to have and keeping it simple – Keeps you Sane!
2. Stick to your Budget: This will definately help with Tip #1 as well. Overspending at the holidays may be fun in the moment, but the stress of having all that debt afterwards may override the ‘joy’. Decide ahead of time what your budget is – or isn’t – and stick to it. And, remember, some of the best and most memorable presents don’t cost a dime!
3. Self-Care: Make sure to take time for yourself. Stop – Breathe Relax – Refresh – and then Rejoice!
4. Plan Ahead: Take advantage of the ‘after-holiday’ sales and replenish those decorations & supplies & store them for next year. Make a list of possible gifts for family & friends and watch the sales throughout the year. Use a ‘holiday-savings club’ at your bank or credit union and start saving now for next year!
5. Celebrate Loved Ones: The holidays can be difficult if you’ve recently lost someone you love or they passed during this time of year. In my case my dad passed in early December & his birthday is early January so this time of year is always bittersweet. Create new rituals and ways to include your loved ones during your celebrations. Put our their favorite decorations or personal items. Cook their favorite dishes. It’s ok to be sad and to miss them. And it’s ok if you don’t feel like celebrating. Give yourself permission to grieve their absence and then find the strength to find some joy in your own life now.
6. Divide up Holiday Chores: Who says you have to do it all? Make a ‘to-do’ list of everything that needs to be done around the holidays and then divy it up. Many of the things on your list can be a shared task or done by someone other than you.