Each year we have high expectations for the holiday season- we want to see our friends and families, go shopping, give people the perfect gift, have beautiful decorations, and enjoy tasty food.
In reality, we can end up stressed, over-eating and drinking too much, irritated with our friends and family, mulling over what to get people and pressed for time to get those decorations and food done.
DON’T DO THAT TO YOURSELF!
The older I get, the more I realize we have more power over how we feel about things than we allow ourselves to employ.
Let’s talk about some ways to change your mindset ahead of the situation to lessen stress over this season.
Instead of being mad about something a friend of family member always does, think about how they add value to your life.
For instance, you have that one person who always likes to bring up sensitive topics (like politics or religion) which inevitably sparks an argument.
Instead of being irritated try this:
- Appreciate their opinion, by asking them how they would solve the issue and engaging to learn more instead of trying to convince them they are wrong.
- Be grateful that they are around to give you a different perspective. Whether you agree or not, it is important to hear various points of view because we may learn something.
- Focus on what they bring to the table- literally and figuratively. Have they brought something tasty for everyone to enjoy? Are they always willing to be there when you need them? Do they spend invaluable time with you and your loved ones? FOCUS ON THAT.
FOOD and DRINKS
- Don’t overeat! Get a small plate and follow the plate method but allow yourself to have some treats in the mix too. When you are finished eating throw your plate away and don’t stand near the food. DRINK LOTS OF WATER.
- Try to make some healthy options or bring a healthy option to parties.
- Don’t grab something every time you walk by a plate of food. Those drive-by’s add a TON of unnecessary calories to your day.
- Plan when you will have an alcoholic beverage and how many BEFORE the event and then STICK TO IT!!
- Do something for yourself
- Remember the ultimate gift is your time and love NOT something tangible. So don’t fret over what to get people- if it comes form the heart they will know and love it.
- Include some deep breathing if you feel like you are getting upset or angry. One minute of deep breathing can make a huge difference.
- Don’t react- take some time to think about what bothers you and why. Then come back and address it when you have had time to analyze it.
- Don’t waste your time comparing yourself to what your neighbor did, or what gifts other people gave—YOU DO YOU!!
- Plan out days and times to get things done on your to-do list, but make sure you have blocked out time for:
- * Family dinners
- * Relaxing
- * Doing something fun
- Be appreciative of what you were able to do instead of harping on what you couldn’t get to.
- Plan gifts before you head out shopping, so you spend less time wondering.
- Make sure you plan for extra travel time. Don’t get so far in a rush that EVERY person on the road literally drives you to anger. Dashing can lead to crashing!