Your #1 Holiday Plan: Reduce Holiday Stress
Thanksgiving is now behind us, which means that we are barreling towards end-of-year holidays at an alarming speed.
Between gift buying, meal planning and hitting the road for holiday travel, even the most organized among us tend to get stressed. And like we’ve discussed before, sustained stress can lead to adverse health effects including weight gain, irritability, and increased blood pressure.
To help you enjoy this next month, we have complied a go-to list of ways to lessen your burden and help you enjoy your holiday season. If you have any great tips, make sure to leave us a note on our comment page so others can learn from your success!
Create a holiday countdown
Most of us have a hodgepodge of calendars from work, our phones and school schedules. So, for December, create a single calendar where everything from parties to appointments is listed. If you create the calendar digitally, consider sharing it with your spouse, children or other family members who are integral to your holiday plans. This means everyone will be reminded that you are having brunch with grandma at 10am, and no one is surprised the morning of!
In conjunction with the single shared calendar, make sure to call for all end-of-year appointments now. Whether you need a haircut or your child needs a physical to go out for sports in the spring, calendars are filling up NOW due to last-minute needs and holiday hours.
If you need to sneak in your end-of-year dental appointment at Dr. Ku’s, please take note that we are closed December 24-25 and closed January 1 as well.
Draw up a house holiday plan
Do you dread cleaning before guests show up? It can seem that the list of chores always grows, and everyone else in the family seems to disappear when the heavy scrubbing is necessary.
Instead of trying to tackle all the cleaning in one weekend, break holiday preparations into small, manageable tasks. For example, week one is “bed and bath week.” This could include surveying towels to make sure they don’t need to be replaced and see that all are washed. Clean the bathrooms and check bedrooms to make sure they are stocked for your guests.
The next week could focus on living areas where you declutter, dust, vacuum and wash throw blankets in the den or other areas where guests will congregate. Continue with this plan until all rooms are clean. Take the final days before the guests arrive to simply touch up areas that may have gotten messy again. Also, don’t forget to enlist the whole family’s help!
Stick to a budget
Aside from household stress, concerns about money over the holidays is at the top of many people’s list of stressors. Prior to purchasing anything, look at what you can spend over the holidays that won’t cause you stress later in the year—or at the start of the next one.
Last December, American shoppers racked up an average of $1,054 worth of debt. This only contributes to stress throughout the new year. This time, prevent stress by looking for sales, avoiding impulse buys and religiously sticking to your budget. Remember that memories last longer than this year’s hottest trinkets, so try to emphasize local adventures over toys. Thankfully, our winters are still somewhat mild this time of year, so head outside instead of the mall on those extra days off!
Don’t let the happiest time of the year stress you out. By following these simple steps, we hope you’re able to enjoy this time of year to the max with your loved ones. If you have any great tips or tricks, make sure to share them with us here!
Also published on Medium.