Since we are truly in the thick of the holiday season, I wanted to share a few tips on how to save your holiday spirit instead of ruining it with stress and anxiety.
1. Don’t sweat the small stuff
Whether your hosting guests at your house or traveling from family to family this year, don’t sweat the small stuff. Getting all in a tizzy because there’s dust on your picture frame or your bathroom has the wrong soap is bound to ruin your day. I think most of the time we start to stress over little things, we are really using them ignore our real source of anxiety. So, when you feel yourself becoming an overbearing perfectionist, take a moment to yourself and list three things that you are really excited for that day and focus on those. It’s so easy to get lost in anxiety that we miss out on the things we’ve been looking forward to.
2. Keep some type of routine
I think a lot of stress comes from the fact the our routines are thrown off. Instead of saying “I’ll get back into my routine in the new year”, keep some of that routine in place. It may not look exactly how you’re used to, but keeping some of your daily rituals can keep you sane among all of the madness. Continue to go to the gym, take a walk when you need a breather, read your book at night, have your morning coffee or tea. Whatever small part of your routine you can commit to sticking to, use that to keep your day balanced.
3. Let go
Let go of your need to control the day. Let go of your schedule. Let go of your detailed plan. When so many people are in the mix, the day is bound to go in any number of directions, which is great! That’s the whole point. People are together, in the same room, for a few hours. Depending on your life, family and friends this may not happen often or ever again. The order of presents or food or games isn’t really what matters, and your controlling strict schedule is just going to stress everyone out including yourself.
4. Be in the moment
Set your Facebook aside, your work, your plans for tomorrow and be present. Soak it all in. Listen to the laughter around you. Have a conversation with someone you haven’t seen in awhile. Play some games with the kids even if you’re half asleep. Listen to your grandpa tell you the same story he tells every year. Don’t try to change anyone or fix anything, just be in the moment and take it all in.
5. Enjoy the madness
If you want your holiday to be quiet and peaceful, stay home. Otherwise, just enjoy the craziness. It it absolutely possible to be in a room with too many personalities, too many kids, and too many opinions and still not lose your shit- I promise. It’s entirely about you and your perspective. The way to do it is to decide right now that you are going to enjoy the day with all the ups and downs it comes with. Accept the fact that the people you will be enjoying the day with aren’t perfect and embrace the big crowd for all that it is. Take a deep breath, smile and enjoy the madness.
Happy Holidays Everyone!