It's that time of year again where we all get overwhelmed by the holidays, me included. We all feel it. We want to enjoy the holiday season and be festive but you also feel the stress of wanting to please everyone this time of the year. I may have some helpful tips to help you get thru the holiday season.
1. If you aren't feeling the holiday season this year, you don't have. Don't force yourself to be happy just because it's the holiday season. You're just gonna make it worse.
2. If you feel lonely, volunteering your time to help others also is a good way to lift your spirits and broaden your friendships.
3. Be realistic about the holidays. It doesn't have to be perfect or just like it was last year. You don't have to outdo yourself from the year before.
4. Try to stick to a budget. You don't have to go out and buy expensive gifts to family and friends to impress them. Something simple and thoughtful is what counts. Think about what they may like vs what you think they may like. Before you go gift and food shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend. Then stick to your budget. Don't try to buy happiness with an avalanche of gifts.
*Give homemade gifts.
*Start a family gift exchange like a secret Santa and keep it under a certain amount for each person.
* Baked goodies such as pies, cakes and cookies make great gifts too. Wrap it up nice with a bow and you are good to go.
* Donate to toy drives and clothing drives.
5. Family separation during the holidays can get you down. It is hard this time of year trying to make arrangements to spend time with family especially when the funds are low. If you can't be with family this year, make arrangements to Facetime or Skype with family during the holidays. It is a perfect way to be with love ones when you can't physically be there. With technology today, you can still be with love ones.
This is especially difficult time of the year when you have lost a love one recently or in the past. Share those feelings of lost with someone you trust and are willing to listen. Don't hold it in. Instead of focusing on the pain of them not being there, focus on the memories that you have with them . This could bring of great feelings of the time you shared with that loved one.
6. Learn how to say NO. Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and colleagues will understand if you can't participate in every project or activity. If it's not possible to say no when your boss asks you to work overtime, try to remove something else from your agenda to make up for the lost time.
And last but not least.... Learn to forgive and acceptance. If some of your relatives have always acted out or made you feel bad, chances are they may not change. If you know what you're getting into, it will be easier to not let them push your buttons. Go with the flow until its over. You may have to realize that they maybe family and you love them but you don't have to like them just accept them for who they are move on.
Hope these help with the stresses of the holidays. I want to wish each and everyone of you a safe and wonderful holiday season.