It’s the most wonderful time of the year! With December already upon us, it’s time to get ahead of all the holiday craziness that’s about to consume our lives. We know how hectic this season gets, with all the holiday celebrations, gift exchanges, and family parties – the festivities feel like they never end. As much fun as this season is, it can also definitely take a toll on our time, our health, and especially our bank accounts. The holidays can be overwhelming, so I’m sharing some ideas on how to prepare and avoid stress this holiday season.
One of the best things about the holiday season is getting to spend time with your loved ones. However with all the social gatherings and family parties, it can easily become a bit overwhelming. It’s probably inevitable that your family will be inquiring with the typical questions about who you’re dating, what exactly you do at your job, and any other question that will make you feel like you have to overcompensate with an impressive answer that will convince your family that you’re succeeding at life by their standards. The only real way to avoid stressful situations with your family? Don’t let it get to you. Of course it’s easy to get annoyed and frustrated, but that will only put a damper on your mood. Smile, answer politely, and focus on the positive things around you. As long as you’re confident and happy with yourself and where you are in life, there’s no sense in letting your family’s judgement affect your feelings. The holidays are meant to be cheerful, so try to avoid any confrontation or drama with family members. Ultimately, it’s up to you how you react.
For some people, shopping for gifts is one of the best parts of the holiday season, yet for others it’s an absolute nightmare. Holiday shopping can get stressful and very expensive, very quickly. The smartest way to approach holiday shopping is to plan ahead – make a list and check it twice, you know how it goes. I suggest making a list of everyone you need to shop for, along with ideas on what to get them, and (an ideally) reasonable budget. It also helps when people tell you exactly what they want – yes this takes away the element of surprise, but it’s a foolproof way to get the most practical and actually useful gifts. It’s also helpful to agree on budgets among people you’re exchanging gifts with, especially with gift exchanges, secret santas, and white elephant gifts with friends, co-workers, etc. Having an established price range or limit is beneficial for everyone trying to stay within their holiday budget.
Food & Drinks
You can spend weeks, even months, making healthy choices, cooking clean meals, and working out consistently to keep your health in check. But when the holidays come around, it’s too easy to go overboard with indulging and overeating. It doesn’t have to be that way. It’s tempting to fall into the trap of all the delicious treats and boozy drinks at every holiday party, but it’s important to remember to pace yourself. Just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean you have to completely give up your healthy lifestyle. At the same time, you shouldn’t deprive yourself of something you really crave. It’s all about balance and moderation. A helpful tip that I learned during a nutrition class was to use the Hunger Scale to gauge your fullness while eating. If you take a second to stop and listen to your body, it will help you to avoid overeating, and allow you to enjoy your favorite goodies guilt-free. The holidays are meant to be enjoyed to the fullest, and sometimes that means indulging in some hot chocolate and cookies when you really want it. Don’t be too hard on yourself for treating yourself during the holiday season.
I hope keeping these things in mind will help you navigate this hectic season more smoothly, so you can enjoy all the holiday cheer to its fullest.
Happy Holidays to all!
A working professional and a lifelong dreamer, Bohdana strives to merge her passions with her everyday reality. She is a proud Ukrainian and a loyal Chicagoan (despite the winters). She loves traveling, reading, pursuing self-improvement, and sharing her stories. Allow this blog to bring you motivation and inspiration on your own journey to rise beyond.