- Making a list and checking it twice" works especially well to reduce stress at holiday time.
- Evaluate costs of gifts, time it takes to make or purchase them, and the quality of your selections. You don't have to skimp on quality to be cost effective
- Give gifts of the heart. They are often appreciated the most.
- Prioritize what you want to accomplish so that we stay focus and do not get sidetracked.
- Seek joy and not perfection. Lower expectations about how our gifts are wrapped, buying the perfect gifts, and having the perfectly decorated homes and all the "right" food and dishes.
- ·Look for flexibility in purchases such as extended store hours, excellent customer service, flexible payment arrangements, guarantee policies. If the price is higher and it saves time needed or the quality will last for years, it may be worth it.
- Do comparison shopping. Alot of times, you jump on the first thing and then find something even even better. There are some great sales
right before Christmas.
- Don't extend yourself financially. Budget time and money for gifts and pay cash or with a debit card or a credit card with no interest or low interest or deferred interest.
- Take time for yourself. This is hard to do at holiday time, but you'll be much happier if you pause, breathe, exercise, take a walk, have a hot bath, or read something that inspires you. Add 15 minutes a day for yourself on your list. When you feel happy, those around you will pick up your attitude.
- Surround yourself with positive energy in people, places and things. At this time of year, you may be getting together with difficult relatives. Seek out those people you really enjoy and who "lift you up" at holiday gatherings. By sharing stories with the people you most enjoy at the gathering, it helps you to stay positive with negative
- Think about what caused you stress last year at this time and ask yourself how you can prevent that from happening this year. Write down the steps you will take to avoid holiday challenges of the past.
- Savor the moments of the precious present.Those special positive moments at each holiday happen once in that exact way. They are snapshots in time. They are always with us and we use them to create, weave and spin our memories together. Think and talk about those precious moments and be grateful for them. "Count your blessings" really works. It brings you many more. Have a wonderful holiday season.