7 Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday


In my last post, Holiday Stress, I explained why the “most wonderful time of the year” is often the most stressed-out time of the year too.  And I shared eight common causes of holiday stress, including: work, busyness, family relationships, travel, Christmas shopping & gift giving, food & drink, expectations, and money.

Today I want to give you some ways of coping with holiday stress, and even eliminating it, so you can enjoy stress-free holidays.

7 Tips for a Stress-Free Holiday

  1. Plan ahead – You can enjoy margin in your life, and a healthy work-life balance, even when you add extra holiday events or extra work hours to the mix.  But you need to plan ahead and book things into your calendar as early as possible.  Often, the stress doesn’t come so much from the extra events, but because we haven’t adequately planned or accommodated for them in our schedule.
  2. Set a budget – Guilt-free and stress-free shopping can be yours if you set a budget in advance.  Oh, and if you stick with it!
  3. Just say no – You can’t do it all.  So figure out which people or events you can say “yes” to, and which ones you should say “no” to.  You have my permission. There, doesn’t that make you feel better?
  4. Get over it – If you’re stressed-out over family relationships, get over it.  Give yourself, and others, the gift of forgiveness this Christmas.  Even if you think they don’t deserve it.  Especially if you think they don’t deserve it.  Because it’s not really about them…it’s about what’s going on in your heart and your life.  And if you continue to be mad at them, you are letting them exercise power and control over you, whether you realize it or not.
  5. Let it go – Know what you can control and what you cannot…and let go of what you cannot.  You can’t control other people’s attitudes, expectations, or actions.  So don’t worry about those things. Instead, spend some time thinking of how you’ll respond, in a positive way, when other people do or say dumb things, whether it’s at work, at a Christmas party, or other situation.
  6. Think trade-offs – You can enjoy those huge holiday meals and special desserts, without the worry of gaining weight, if you make trade-offs by exercising more or eating less at other times.  Again, the key is to plan ahead.  For example, I’ve heard of some people who run a “Turkey Trot” 5-K on Thanksgiving morning, before sitting down to their big Thanksgiving feast.
  7. Remember the reason for the season – Christmas is special to me, and millions of other people around the world, as a commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ – the greatest gift of all.  Remember that this is supposed to be a season of love, joy and peace – not stress and anxiety.  Make some time to read the Christmas story and reflect on what Christmas means to you.  And if your thoughts and expectations about Christmas, and gift giving, aren’t what you’d like them to be, do what you can to change them this year!

What’s your take on this list of ways to enjoy a stress-free holiday?  What else would you add?
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Trackbacks

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by stressuk, Rich Avery. Rich Avery said: Is this the "Most Wonderful Time of the Year? " Not if you're stressed! Here are 7 tips for a stress-free holiday. http://bit.ly/foZGh1 […]

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