Ok, be honest…did that make your smile get even bigger or did you roll your eyes and groan a little?
There seems to be three main groups of people when it comes to celebrating the holidays:
The Christmas early birds. These folks start decorating for Christmas as soon as the last Trick-or-Treater leaves the front porch stoop. The tree is up, lights are on and carols are blasting way before the Thanksgiving turkey is even done. There is no such thing as too early for Christmas!
The Christmas Grinches. These folks are so overwhelmed by the holidays that just the thought of adding one more thing on top of an already full schedule is overwhelming and even paralyzing. Decorate a tree? I have even cleaned up last year’s mess! They don’t necessarily mean to be mean…it’s just too much to take on.
The content Christmas middle-of-the-roaders. These folks know how to enjoy the added celebrations while also knowing when to say no and when enough is enough.
If you find yourself in Group 2, well you’ve come to right place! We’ve put together a few simple suggestions to help you slow down, breathe deeper, and take in the celebrations of the season without feeling burdened or burnt out.
Get Sleep. Sleep is the key to lowering stress levels any time of year. Study after study has shown that getting adequate amounts of sleep on a regular basis not only helps with memory, mood, weight management and heart health, but also stress levels. (Plus, about a hundred more benefits!). It’s so tempting to stay up late in order to check off those extra things on our to-do lists, but it is best to let them wait.
Alone time. Sometimes we just need a few minutes to ourselves to recharge. This can be in the form of sitting down with a book and cup of hot chocolate, enjoying a walk around the neighborhood, a long bath, or journaling about the things you are grateful for (all proven stress relievers!). Whatever you need to do to hit the reset button on your mind, do it!
And PS, this is to be a guilt free event. Remember the whole, “Put the oxygen mask on yourself first” thing? You must take care of yourself in order to take care of others. No matter whether “others” is your family, friends, or work, you need to take care of yourself in order to properly give them what they need.
Say no. No is not a bad word. In fact, sometimes “No” is the most wonderful word ever! It is perfectly fine to kindly send in your regrets to attend a party or event. If you need a cheat sheet, feel free to copy this: “I know you are going to throw an amazing dinner next Saturday night! Unfortunately, we will not be able to attend. I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating with everyone! Let’s be sure to catch up with each other in the new year!”.
See, how easy that was! You don’t even have to give an explanation. Spreading yourself too thin is no good for anyone. If you go to every party and every celebration, you’ll just be a big ‘ole tired out grump and no one wants that at their holly jolly party! Prioritize what events you want to attend and just say no to the others. Quality over quantity.
Sleep. Alone time. Say no.
These are so simple, yet we way too often ignore the need to do them. So, if you find yourself too overwhelmed to trim your tree, too worn out for your Wassel, or too pooped out for presents…it’s time to get some rest, take some time for yourself and learn to say no.
After all, the holidays are meant to be a time for being with family and friends and for reflecting on how truly blessed we are, not for being stressed and grumpy.
If the thought of cleaning your home gets you all stressed out, call your local Two Maids & A Mop! They will be happy to give you a quote and take one more thing off of your to-do off of your holiday list!