How to Manage Holiday Stress
Holiday stress is something no one wants to deal with. Not only can it affect Moms and Dads (or any adults), it can affect children as well. I do a few things to make sure I don’t get stressed out and the kids don’t get stressed out. One of the biggest stressors around the holidays is traveling. Either sitting in a car for a long time or waiting at the airport, the stress seems to be there! Other stressors can include financial stress and just getting out of a routine.
Here are a few things I do to try manage holiday stress:
- Plan Ahead
- Stay on regular routine
- Self care
Plan ahead as far as you can. Make lists. Have set what family and friends are bringing over to eat and drink if you are throwing a party. Find recipes early. Shop for gifts as early as possible. Planning ahead also has to do with budgeting. Financial stress seems to always hit around the holidays. For a lot of people, their holiday stress is all financial. You want to spoil your family, you just have to stick with the budget you give yourself.
I always want to spoil my kids with presents. Jacob and I come up with a holiday budget amount per person that we have to buy for. And I try my HARDEST to stick to it. Sometimes I get the perfect gift for less than the budget for that person which is great! This year I bought my parents some great gifts and I found them for an awesome deal at a local craft fair. I love craft fairs, probably because I am supporting someone local to me AND because I wish I was THAT CREATIVE! Haha!
Stay on Regular Routine
Staying on your regular routine as much as possible can also help with holiday stress. With traveling and visiting family and friends, you can get off your routine pretty easily. You are eating differently. And you are sleeping in a new place. Which can lead to going to bed at different times. So, trying to stay with as much of a routine as possible will not only help your stress levels but it will also be helpful for your kids.
My kids like structure and when we are not at home, sometimes that goes away. I try to eat around the same times (as best as I can… because we eat dinner by 5:30pm when we are home) and put them to bed at the same time. Our family has gotten used to us putting the kids down early that it doesn’t phase them, which is great. Along with routine, I make sure the kids bring something from home so they are comforted. That may be a blanket or stuffed animal they can cuddle with.
Self care ideas:
- take a bath
- read a book
- close the door for some QUIET time
- (Of course) workout!
Self care is different for everyone but it can definitely help with holiday stress. I LOVE to workout (bet you didn’t know that… ) and it is very much therapeutic for me. Getting a nice quick, HIIT workout in helps reduce any stress that I feel. If I already worked out for the day and I still feel stressed.
I like to take a step back. If I can take a quiet moment to myself to read a book or just sit behind a closed door, I will take it. I get anxious around crowds for a while. Since I am not good at small talk, I usually end up talking to people I know ONLY. Its something that I want to work on, I just need more time.
If you are able to socialize with friends and family, take this time to laugh and joke about something to take your mind off the stress. Laughter is the best medicine… right? Or take a moment to read your favorite Christmas story to your children!
Another great self care option would be taking a bath. Baths help to relieve stress and physical pains as well. So go ahead, add the bubbles and bring your book, this is your “me time”!