For some, the holiday season is the best time of the year, while for someone else it’s the most stressful. Some see only New Year’s decoration on the streets that are recalling them on happiness, while others see a pile of people in a hurry. Many people enjoy everything that holidays bring, and others would prefer to stay closed in the house until euphoria passes.
Some are happy to meet with their family, but there are those who fear from those encounters. We missed the perfect gift for a family member in front of our nose, the dress that we planned to wear for New Year`s eve is tight, we are arguing with our partner about whether the temperature in the apartment should be 21 or 21.5 degrees and the like. It looks like that we are under pressure, and because of what? Because of the desire to be and look extremely happy! It sounds a bit like a paradox, isn`t it?
42 hours for preparations
Research shows that an average person consumes 42 hours a year on holiday preparations. This includes buying, planning and attending parties, decorating the house and storing food. Since our lives are already full of obligations, it is clear that this is an additional pressure. With a tight schedule, financial worries are the biggest trigger of stress in this period. No one is spared, and women and those who have children are even more vulnerable. It is because we want to make everything special for those we love that we forget to give them the most precious and that is ourselves and our time. We should ask ourselves if we need all this and whether there are better ways to spend holidays, in the circle of loved ones, without overeating, buying a lot of gifts and decorations.
Too many tasks
Instead of commitments, experts suggest that you set goals. For example, instead of setting yourself a task to create a huge cake and rich dining, set the goal of enjoying holidays and fine food. Set the goal to make up with some member of your family or to forgive someone. You will feel much better.
Also, when we are not focused, we waste energy, so split the main goal into three smaller ones, for example, decorate a home, prepare your favourite meal and make a great holiday gift. Do not do everything by yourself, share your obligations with the family members and share the holiday spirit with them. Do not be selfish in wanting to do everything by yourself.
It’s important to set a gift budget before you go shopping. An empty wallet is one of the main reasons for an increase in stress level. Does everything always have to be about money? If you are planning to buy gifts you should be aware of the fact that as many as 49 million people in the world get as a present something they do not want. Therefore, do not burden yourself with the price, and contrary to the popular beliefs, children, when they grow up, do not remember the New Year’s gifts, but feelings during the holidays. If you travel back to your past, to the time when you were a kid, you would remember that the gifts actually did not matter much but the spirit and the atmosphere surrounding holidays and your family.
When things do not go the way we have imagined, which is usually the case, do not ask a cause for a nervous breakdown. This will be avoided if you do not imagine the ideal scenario, as with the New Year’s advertisement. As in other areas of life, flexibility and ability to enjoy in a moment, even imperfect, is important.
If you travel somewhere, do not get upset if the hotel is not as in the picture. Do not expect too much of yourself; at this time, many are falling under general hysteria because of the pressure of smiling. Do not expect all the tensions among the family members to magically disappear.
Compromise builds a house, but it has the power to crash it down too. Often, we are caught by the euphoria and want to be better with friends, parents, children, and partner. In such a mood, we are reaching people more than we are accustomed to, but we also pass over if something does not suit us. However, this suppression cannot last long, especially if we do not get the same attention from the other side. Instead of happy holidays, it is possible that at some point we will explode. That’s why experts advise us not to act on what we are not but to express our wishes by saying “no” sometimes so we could grab the moment for ourselves.
The holiday season needs to be a season of joy and not an ordeal. Setting yourself up with some helpful strategies and focusing more on what is truly important can help you regain that balance you need this holiday season. And in case you need some inspirations to build your resilience up, then print out my Resilience December Calendar.
Share it around as you can never know who might need it!