The holidays should be a time of merriment and good cheer, but the reality is often not as picture-perfect as all that. We hope for days curled up in front of a fire, reading our favorite book, or family hangouts where everyone is enthusiastic about board games. Or Christmas dinners where the load of the cooking does not fall on your shoulders… But too often we get the reverse.
With too many parties to attend, we do not know how to get out of them. Teens and family members with their eyes glued to their smartphones, sharing the same space, but not talking. Not to mention the tricky conversations and sensitive subjects to avoid with certain members of our families.
It’s no wonder that holiday depression and stress has been written about by Mayo Clinic and reported on by the APA.
Are you looking for a fail-proof way to navigate the holiday maze without bloodshed this year? You are not alone in your search. The following 3 points can help you make better choices this time around.
Outsource what you can
The holidays are supposed to be a time when you can connect with your loved ones, some of whom have traveled far to make it to your Thanksgiving dinner. But if you are thinking of all the things you must do, taking the time to reconnect might be the last thing your frazzled self might feel like doing.
According to Lifestyle Management of Colorado, LLC, offering personal concierge services based in Denver CO.”Active families and busy professionals are often challenged by the limited number of hours in the day. There just doesn’t seem to be enough time to get everything done.” So consider what chores you can hire out. The New York Times suggests, based on research, that outsourcing dreaded tasks could increase your happiness and decrease stress. Two improvements that will have a high payoff during the holidays.
Don’t go to every holiday party
If you are an introvert type, then you know you’re only good for a certain number of parties before you hit your limit. What you don’t want to do? Waste your socializing energy on people and parties that aren’t at the top of your priority list. If you’ve run the marathon of all the parties you’ve been invited to, you won’t have the energy for the events that really matter. Such as your family’s Christmas dinner.
Before saying “yes” to any invitations, make a list of the holiday happenings that you want to be at your best for. Then make sure that any other events that you accept aren’t happening too close to the most important events, which will allow you time to recover and refill your depleted energy stores.
Reconsider your holiday gifting
In a study by eBay and published by Newsweek, research found that holiday shopping increases your heart rate by 32 percent. This is roughly the equivalent of running for an extended amount of time. In many surveys on the topic, the public generally finds holiday shopping stressful and expensive. Yet, we continue year after year in a tradition that seems to have lost touch with the original intent.
If you can feel your stress levels rise as you think about all the holiday shopping still on your to-do list, take a step back. Ask yourself why you’re getting those gifts in the first place. Are you doing it to celebrate the concept of giving? If so, why not choose to give to a charity instead? Or are you doing it as a thoughtful way to show a certain person what they mean to you? There are other ways to do that, which can be just as meaningful and vastly less stressful on your mind and wallet.
Here are a few ideas:
- Write them a holiday greeting and mention a reason why you are thankful for their presence in your life.
- Invite them over for a Happy Hour or Sunday dinner in their honor over at your place.
- Bake them their favorite dessert.
- Plan an outing or a coffee date together.
There is no doubt about it. Giving to others makes us happy and is a cornerstone of the holiday season. But giving does not need to only be confined to material goods or store-bought items. And choosing an alternative way to give might, in fact, add meaning back into your holidays, rather than detract from it.
Article Submitted By Community Writer