Deal With Stress

3 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays

3 ways to enjoy the holidaysI am exactly like a lot of you – so anxious to get to the next thing on the list that I move too fast to enjoy it all.

I think it was Albert Einstein that said if he had an hour to save the world, he’d plan for 55 minutes and take action in the last 5.

And yes, this is the most wonderful time of year (as the song goes) but it’s also one of the most stressful times of year for many people.

Blogs, Pinterest, Instagram can all make you feel less than perfect if you let them.

Here are 3 ways to enjoy the holidays this year:

1. Talk to your family members to align everyone’s expectations

Sit down and ask each person what they most enjoy or want to do in December and forget about the rest. Maybe you’ve been trying to do lots of baking for the family and nobody really cares about that.

Adjust your expectations and let the “shoulds” go.

My kids love going out and about and so I’ve planned a special outing every weekend. It’s really good when you keep expectations low because my kids are even happy to go to the library as a special outing.

2. Set strong boundaries

What about other people-imposed time commitments?

I have some friends who will be driving 10 hours one way to spend two days with one side of the family and then 5 hours another way to spend another few days with the other side.

They don’t want to do it but they don’t want to upset anyone.

My suggestion is to start gently but firmly setting stronger boundaries which means also taking your own opinions and feelings into account.

Maybe this year suggest that you’ll go to one set of parents (if you want to do so) and another set next year. Or better still, they can come visit you.

3. Plan realistically and well

If you only have three weekend days free for the entire month of December and you both work full-time, there’s no way you can realistically and sanely do 10 outings. That may be an extreme example but I think a lot of us need to hear extreme examples to really have it hit home.

Something that works really well for me is having a monthly calendar at a glance with blocks big enough to write in. I mark off all the socials and other time commitments and then it’s clear – I can’t actually do everything I’d necessarily like to do because sadly, I still only have 24 hours in a day… and I need my 8 hours of sleep.

I mentioned recently to a friend that success for me is one two-hour outing with the twins without a meltdown or tantrum.

She laughed (she has an 8 and 10-year-old) when she remembered what this stage is like.

Because of that, I really try not to overdo things with my kids because I’m realistic about what they can and cannot do.

If you’re starting to feel frazzled, stop and start doing one of these three steps.

I’m sure it will make you feel better and help keep you sane over this busy time of year.

Marcia Francois is a time management coach and speaker who inspires busy women to break out of overwhelm, make the most of their time and take purposeful and focussed action so they have the time and freedom to live life to the full. Visit for your free Time Management Purpose Pack.

Article Source:  3 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays

One reply on “3 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays”

It’s funny how for me, the holidays were always so stressful with all the family, gift exchanges, meal planning and all the hustle and bustle. Now that I live so far away from family, the holidays have become a lot more quiet, but I must admit, I do miss all of the frantic activity at times. Make the best of every situation, you never know when things might change.

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