The best time of the year can easily become the most stressful, but only if we over commit and over consume. I’ve got a few tips to help minimize the challenges that come with Christmas and all of the festivities!
Simplify Presents: We don’t buy for everyone in our extended family, and they don’t all buy for us. Adults have taken the back seat on gifts, since kids have come along. One small gift for each niece and nephew, a combined gift for our parents (with siblings) and minimal gifts for our immediate family. Justin & I either combine a gift or buy each other one larger item that we’ve wanted. This will be the first year we stick to four presents per child… something they wear, read, want & share!
Don’t Overcommit: You know your family’s limits, don’t push beyond those. It’ll take all of the joy out of the entire holiday. Overcommitment is a recipe for stress, especially with kids. FOMO is a real thing, but it’s necessary for sanity. We’re careful with our time during the month of December and don’t try to cram more in than is good for us. Also, Christmas family functions are limited to one event per side on Christmas Eve & Christmas Day.
Comparison Be Gone: It’s really easy to start comparing your family to other families. You’re traditions and recipes, to theirs. All your festivities compared to their festivities. Just enjoy the people you’re with. Skip the perfect family Christmas card, use a boxed stuffing mix, buy a cake, wear sweatpants. If you don’t enjoy creating from scratch, use the shortcuts! If you don’t have time, don’t do it. Focus on joy and love more than making the perfect impression. Others will appreciate the REAL, joyful you more than they’d be impressed by the trying to do it all, stressed you.
Christmas can be a season of so much joy and hope. Don’t let less important factors and expectations, rob the possibilities of the season. Love the ones you’re with and enjoy the places you go!