Surviving the holidays and taking the time to enjoy them can sometimes be a bit stressful. Between family gatherings and work deadlines, shopping, and cooking, there’s just so much to do and so little time.
The holidays are meant to be a joyous time- and they most certainly can be!
Learning to enjoy the holidays more and stress less is not only good for your own well-being, but also that of your family, friends, neighbors, and loved ones.
I want to share with you some ways that you can enjoy the holidays and not just survive them. Read on to find out how to start enjoying this wondrous season.
Plan Ahead to Survive the Holidays
This simple task can eliminate so much stress. We know when Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s (and other holidays) are. They fall on the same day each year. So, plan with family and friends a few months out so that you know what you’ll be doing for each holiday.
Once you have the dates and events on your calendar, (make sure you write them down as you plan them) you can better manage your time and spend more time with family and maybe get some early shopping knocked out.
Shop Early to Save and enjoy the Holidays
If you start your holiday shopping earlier in the year, you will save a lot of time and money in the long run. Black Friday used to be the best time to shop, but that’s no longer the case. Many stores have “Black Friday” deals throughout the year as well as the entire month of November. Sometimes there are still good Black Friday deals, but for the most part, it seems to be a marketing ploy.
I have found that the best way to save money is by shopping deals and selling online. For example, Target recently had an expensive item that my daughter wanted on sale, and they also had a 25% off coupon. I saved $40.00 on that item and didn’t have to worry about it going out of stock close to the holidays.
It’s easier to purchase a gift or two with each paycheck throughout the year. That way you don’t have to stress about finding time and money to go out searching for items that may not even be in stock. I’d rather sit on my cozy couch and shop than fight off the crowds and stand in long lines. That means more time for coffee and wrapping presents! Oh, and Hallmark movies, of course.
If you will be hosting an event at your home and will be entertaining out-of-town guests, it may not be ideal for them to stay at your home. Maybe you don’t have a large enough house or maybe everyone wouldn’t get along for a long period of time. Whatever the reason could be, you have other options.
I highly recommend Airbnb to your guests and yourself if you’re the one traveling. My family uses Airbnb for all of our trips now and we love it. You can find a home that meets all of your needs. At regular hotels, no one had their own space and that can be miserable for a family of five.
At Airbnb, we can rent an entire three-bedroom house (with a pool table too) for barely more than a hotel would cost. Explore your options. You can book Airbnb ahead of time, and if your plans change, you have the option to cancel and receive a refund in most cases.
Self-care is important all of the time, but especially during the holidays. If you need help with something, don’t be afraid to ask for it. Take time to rest and do things that you enjoy. Don’t overstress yourself because you think you’re supposed to do what everyone wants.
Everyone that cares about you just wants you to be happy! Set aside an hour or so each evening where you only do what makes you happy. Whether it’s a bubble bath or watching a movie, maybe even baking or taking a walk. You’ll be recharged and ready to tackle everything on your holiday to-do list.
Breathe It All In
The most important thing that you can do to not only survive but to actually enjoy the holidays, is to breathe it all in. Don’t get wrapped up in what may go wrong or things that you didn’t get done, those are just small stressors. Enjoy the moment, enjoy the time that you get to spend with your family and loved ones.
When the holidays roll around, set all the stress aside and take it all in. After all, we only have a few days each year that are designated for amazing food, gifts, family, and friends. Why not make the most of the holidays?