Surviving the Season

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Christmas time with family and friends is wonderful; a ham in the oven and lights twinkling, the presents being wrapped and exchanged, the Christmas tree being decorated and carols being sung by the fire. But, your level of patience is diminishing and your blood is starting to boil. The holidays are supposed to be a time of joy and excitement for children and adults alike. The spirit of Christmas should be felt when welcoming a guest into your home, but stress can often take the peace and joy out of your heart. With so many things on our “to-do list”, we can feel overwhelmed and even burdened by the experience. However, having a holiday plan can help us tackle the projects of the season without wanting to pull our hair out. Here are just a few tips for keeping your sanity:

1. Create a budget: The holidays can be very expensive, and if you have a large family, the cost of buying presents and goodies for each member, can break the bank. In addition to purchasing for other people, there are items that you’d like as well. The cost for Christmas tree ornaments and decorations, plus wrapping paper and greeting cards can really add up. So if you create a budget ahead of time and stick to it, you should be able to make it through the season without having to file bankruptcy.

2. Shopping early: For some people, shopping isn’t a welcomed event; it takes time and patience to find the perfect gift. But shopping early can cut down on the stress that people feel when they wait until the last minute. Not only can you find the best deals but it also helps you find a variety of gift items.

3. Just Say no: The saying, “It’s better to give than receive” is great to live by; but can be difficult when it comes to giving your time. The season is packed with things to do and we tend to take on more than we can handle. Our list of 20 errands turns into 50, and before you know it frustration and bitterness sets in. It’s ok to say no if you just can’t handle another task and most likely the one asking for help will understand.

4. Allow enough time: Traveling is common during the holiday season, but with adults working and children in school, many families are racing to get to their destinations before Christmas. Planning a vacation or even taking a few days off from work or school before the holiday, will allow you enough time to travel without having to rush.

5. Rest and Relaxation: Because the season is so busy and there aren’t enough hours in the day, we don’t always give ourselves time to relax. If our bodies are tired and we don’t take care of ourselves we are susceptible to colds and flu. Getting the proper rest and eating nutritiously can not only give us the energy we need, but it also helps us to start each day stress free.

Applying these things can help if you’re feeling the holiday blues. They may not take away all of the problems, worries or frustrations that can happen during the season, but it can help you keep your sanity.

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