The holiday season is supposed to be a time of joy and giving, you get to see friends and family you haven’t seen in a while. However, for most people the month of December also means more bills, more errands to run and seeing family members who stress you out. Read on for tips to help you have a stress free December.
- Set a budget. Most of us are guilty of walking into a store to buy one thing and leaving with three more. To help avoid these mishaps try to remember that feeling you got when you got your credit card bill in January last year. You can even create a savings account you use just for holiday spending or take out cash in the exact amount you want to spend and don’t spend more.
- Have 20-minute missions. Have one goal in mind and tackle it in 20 minutes. Start by taking 20 minutes to write your list of who to buy for and what to buy them, and then take 20 minutes, on another day, to take out last year’s decorations, another 20 to take stock of what you’ll need to buy. You can also write your Christmas cards and write out the recipes you’ll be making this year. This technique will make everything seem less overwhelming.
- Plan and prepare. Write lists of what you have to do, use the calendar in your phone and set up reminders. Start doing this now, look at your schedule and see where there are lulls and use this time to shop, decorate, make travel plans, etc. If you start your shopping now you won’t be stuck searching for parking or waiting in long lines.
- Buy online. There are so many stores that offer free shipping these days, look at Wal-Mart, Chapters and even your favourite clothing stores. Start looking around online and bookmark the things you will be buying. Use your time wisely; you can even do this on your lunch break. By shopping online you save yourself stress and time by beating the lines, avoiding busy parking lots and getting it done early, with peace of mind.
- Wrap presents as you go. As soon as you get home from the mall or as soon as you receive the presents you ordered online take the time to wrap them and put them away. This way you’re doing it bit by bit and you won’t have to put away a large chunk of time a few days before Christmas to wrap.
- Relax! December is supposed to be a festive holiday month but it’s also the time of year where depression and anxiety increase drastically. Put 20 minutes aside for a bubble bath or allow yourself to sleep in for 20 minutes. December can be so over stimulating so it’s very important to also increase self-compassion and self care during this time.