The winter holidays can be a magical time, filled with wonder, excitement, and treats! For parents, it can be a stressful time that requires juggling house guests, entertainment, shopping, baking along with the responsibilities of daily life. With some careful planning, however, this holiday season can be one of the simplest yet, leaving you time to enjoy the celebrations with your family. Here are a few ways you can de-stress and simplify the holidays:
Schedule Time for Self-Care
At the beginning of the winter season, sit down and mark your calendar for the major events (such as school performances, office parties, flight information for incoming relatives). Then, schedule in time for exercise, meal prepping, and other activities that will help you maintain a healthy routine throughout the season! Balance is key, and chances are, if you don’t make time for yourself, it won’t happen.
Let Go of Expectations
You don’t have to host a Pinterest-ready holiday. Holidays are a time for spending quality time with your friends and family. Make a list of what you want to prioritize this season and let go of the rest. If you want to get crafty, make it a group activity! Giving children a task will help them contribute and will allow you to spend time together during the season!
Don’t Overextend Yourself
It can be easy to get caught up in the holiday excitement and find yourself committing to making baked goods, going on airport runs, and planning the office party all on the same day. While the season is about giving, make sure that your commitments are realistic, and that you aren’t setting yourself up for a hectic holiday. Keep it simple this holiday season, and only take on as much as you feel you can balance with your own needs.
Model the Behavior You Want
If you want your children to behave appropriately, modeling that behavior at home can make a big difference. When plans go awry this holiday season, let your children know that it’s okay to feel frustrated, but that there are appropriate ways to react. More often than not, you will find that they will follow your example when they find themselves in a similar situation.
Get Out of the House
Make time to take walks and plan outdoor activities to blow off steam with your family! Check your community calendars for free holiday events, and don’t be afraid to take out the hats and mittens!
Remember, there is no “right” way to celebrate during the holidays. Do what feels right for your family, and don’t be afraid to set boundaries to make sure your needs are met during this holiday season!