This has been the weirdest year ever, so the holidays might feel like a welcome return to normalcy. Your holiday traditions give you an opportunity to celebrate with your loved ones—virtually or IRL—and soak up the most wonderful time of the year.
But we all know that the holidays also come with their fair share of stress. If looking at the rest of the year fills you with a bit of dread along with excitement, this one is for you.
We’ve got three surefire holiday stress busters for you to take for a spin this year.
Map Out Your Schedule—and Include You-Time
Holiday stress often stems from feeling like you need to be at a bunch of places all the time. Even if a lot of your celebrating will take place virtually this year, it’s probably enough to have your calendar feeling fairly full.
Right now, get out your calendar and mark down any events you know you have on the docket. Mark any travel days, too.
Having your holiday schedule written out does two things. First, it gives you something to reference if you get invited to another event. You can quickly check your calendar. Don’t be afraid to say no if the event falls on a week that’s already packed for you.
Secondly, a detailed schedule gives you a chance to add in some slots for yourself. Protecting that space for yourself helps you get through the season without feeling totally burned out on January 1.
Gift Shop Right Now
Why are the holidays so hectic? We can blame that perfect storm of the aforementioned full social calendar and an extensive list of gifts that need to be purchased. With your holiday calendar dialed in, you can focus on your shopping to-dos.
Start today. Make a list of every person for whom you need to purchase a gift. Jot down any ideas you have for them now, and make sure to list a budget for each person.
Put your list somewhere accessible, like on your phone. Then, the next time you’re running errands, you can snag anything that catches your eye. Write down what you bought on your list to keep yourself organized.
Getting a jump start on your gift purchasing—and the organization of it—can help you feel much calmer in the weeks ahead.
Indulge Yourself Guilt-Free
There’s this tricky thing during the holiday season. This time of year is so busy that it can be hard to find some you-time.
It doesn’t have to be this way! There are ways to treat yourself that feel good and do good for you. Here are just a few options:
The holiday season doesn’t have to leave you completely spent! Make sure you make time for yourself and don’t forget to pause and enjoy this special time of year.