The holiday season is upon us and it is certainly one of my favorite times of the year. I love seeing the process of our neighborhood transform from the dull brown of late fall to a wintery wonderland with colorful lights and decorations. I love baking delicious goodies that are somehow void of any calories in the month of December. I love making a cup of hot chocolate and writing out my shopping list, hoping that this is the year I find the perfect gift for each and every person on my list. I love watching the holiday movies on TV year after year with my family. I love spending time volunteering with my coworkers to make a difference in the lives of others.
As picture perfect as that all sounds, we all know this time of year can add more ‘to-do’s’ to our daily schedule. How do we find time to fit it all in? There are family gatherings, work functions, friendly happy hours, children’s programs, meal planning and preparation, and cleaning the house and getting it ready for our guests. There are decorations to hang and gifts to be wrapped and cheery drinks to be sipped. The list goes on and on and sometimes we have to remember that while this time of year is about focusing on others, we can’t forget to also take care of ourselves.
Here are some ideas to help relieve holiday stress:
- It’s okay to say no. Unfortunately, our time is limited and we may not be able to attend every party or gathering and that is okay. If you can’t attend your cousin’s husband’s sister’s boss’s daughter’s music program, simply let them know that this time around it is just not going to work for you. People will understand you can’t make every event and setting boundaries will help you focus on what is important.
- Set realistic expectations. We are all amazing but everyone has their limits of what they are capable of. If you are hosting this year but are not a gourmet chef, consider catering in or asking everyone to bring their favorite dish. If you are a shopping procrastinator like me, don’t expect to get all your shopping done in one 2-hour block. Consider blocking off a few hours here or there or ordering online to save you some time. Realize that everything most likely won’t be perfect all the time (no matter what social media tells us) and know what is important to you.
- Plan ahead. Early on, make a list of all your commitments and plan on how to accomplish each item. Set aside time so you know ahead of time what you need to do. Block off time for shopping, baking, cleaning, etc. This will help prevent the last minute running around for that forgotten ingredient and help you feel more organized.
- Lastly, don’t forget to take care of yourself! This is so important, especially this time of year. Know your limits and schedule in some downtime. Take in a yoga class, do some CrossFit, eat a healthy snack, get an extra hour of sleep, or play with your pets. If you take time to recharge your own batteries, you will feel empowered to take on whatever comes your way and beat that holiday stress!
Lisa has been with Aureus Group since April 2007 and is a Sales Manager for the Omaha market. She specializes in contract/temporary staffing and enjoys helping her clients meet their goals on projects and interim needs. Lisa has more than 10 years of experience in the staffing industry within finance and accounting, and she loves working with her clients to learn about what type of person would best fit their team. One of her favorite things is building relationships with clients and candidates and then watching them progress in their careers. An Omaha native, Lisa also enjoys spending time with her husband and two cairn terriers, running marathons, and traveling to explore new places.