Christmas can feel like taking on an additional part time job with all of the added stress and time pressures that come with it.

This was the insightful observation made by someone who lives in North America but for religious and cultural reasons, does not celebrate Christmas. We all can recognize that preparing for the holidays involves a lot – pressures we place on ourselves to buy the perfect gifts, worrying about how to make the season magical for the little ones in our lives, planning the meals and coordinating the family get togethers, nevermind the actual decorating, wrapping, card-writing, and baking traditions that often come with the season. For those who struggle with time management (myself included!), it can feel like a lot of added stress.

The first question to ask yourself is, “Do I need to do all of it?” Can you give yourself permission to let some of the traditions go for this year, to make things a little easier? If you are set on “doing all the things,” consider a few hacks to get the most out of your available time.

Making a list can be helpful, but even that can be overwhelming for some. If this is the case for you, consider scheduling in one particular focus or highlight for your day that you prioritize. This emphasis ensures that you spend time on something that truly matters to you and don’t lose the day reacting to others priorities.

Try to eliminate distractions from your day. Social media is a big one, but so are things like email and even the news. Try to adjust the time you spend on your phone and on social media by setting some boundaries. This not only frees up time but helps with your mental health as well.

Be sure to take care of yourself. This will help to give you the energy you need to tackle the things you need to do. Focus on eating well, quiet time, exercise or spending time with a friend. Be sure to do the things that make you happy and fill your cup or you may start to feel like you are giving away too much of your time which can feel tiring.

Remember, the holidays don’t have to be perfect. Focusing on the things that matter most to you will simplify your schedule and leave you with the time and energy to enjoy the best of what the season brings.

 

~Dr. Jordan Sokoloski, ND