Stress-Free Countdown to the Holidays

Let’s make a deal. We will celebrate the holidays with less stress and anxiety this year. There will be some, of course. Let’s focus on planning and preparing in advance to eliminate as much of the negative as possible, so we can celebrate all that we can. Deal?

Step 1 – Take a deep breath and exhale slowly. Do this as often as you feel the tension rising.

Step 2 – Take the lead. Let your friends, family and coworkers know what matters most to you. If there is one thing you could really use – let people know so several can pitch in together. Maybe you would love help on a project around the house or a night out without the kids. Be specific. Don’t let friends waste their precious dollars on something that you don’t want or need.

Step 3 – Ask what the people on your list want. Instead of giving a teacher something they don’t need, give them the gift of volunteering or helping in the classroom. Maybe your friend needs a mechanic or needs help organizing their closets. Imagine how they will feel every time they use their clean space or fixed car. Give the gift of less stress.

Step 4 – Put down all of your important reunions, gatherings and events on your calendar right now. Make sure you are giving yourself plenty of time to prepare, save and purchase what you need. Be kind to yourself and avoid last minute chaos. Now what you need to accomplish by when.

Step 5 – Did you get paid today? Can you set aside $25 or $50 for holiday expenses? The little things can add up quickly. Do you have any unused gift cards or reward points built up?

Step 6 – Celebrate life. Celebrate memories. Celebrate possibilities. Be present. Be open. Be the change you want to see in the holiday season.


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