Tinsel and Tantrums: Top tips to reduce the stress of Christmas
Christmas is fast approaching. This brings the joy of excited children, festive magic and a few glasses of mulled wine. But it is human to feel like not spreading ‘goodwill to all’ for every second of it. It can also bring a time of Christmas stress. A sense of too much to do, too little time.
The Christmas that never goes to plan
The present that seems to take forever to arrive in the post? The family members who never commit to a plan? Or end up arriving late for Christmas dinner to eat a burnt turkey? Tantrums from chocolate fuelled kids who refuse to be polite to Auntie Sue? Any of this ring a bell. We all have those ‘aaaah, I have so much to do’ moments and it feels impossible to be saintly to everyone.
Top Tips to reduce the stress of Christmas.
Here are some of my top tips to reduce the stress of Christmas for all you frazzled elves:
- Manage expectations (yours and the kids!) We all put pressure on ourselves to be the most amazing host, super mum, Mother Christmas or everything in between and for it all to be perfect. Take a few minutes to think about what is realistic and what is really important to you this Christmas. Doing the same for the kids is also helpful so that they know how much time they will realistically have to play and how many presents they will get, what the one thing is they would be upset about if they didn’t get it.
- Now is the time to prioritise, and let go of all the other stuff. So ask yourself, does it really matter?
- Think about what is likely to happen that will annoy you? Whether it is a relative or the kids getting on your nerves or kitchen dramas, think about what you can do to make it manageable as a coping mechanism (besides a mulled wine and chocolate!)
- Factor in time out, to get away from it all to just recharge. I love the excuse of putting the kids to bed, and take a bit of time to read on my kindle app or catch up on social media! Giving yourself some alone time will make you happier company.
- Put a little treat under the tree or in your stocking for yourself.
- Remember everyone gets stressed too! So take that into consideration and think about how you can respond before reacting.
- Christmases are never perfect. There is a lot of pressure for Christmas to go according to plan. But Christmas will remind many people of past times and loved ones who are no longer with them. It’s still just another day for those not in a warm home surrounded by loved ones.
- Enjoy the moment, however it turns out and make memories.
I hope you have a merry Christmas, in whatever shape or form yours is, and I look forward to sharing my thoughts and tips with you in the new year.