While the holidays are a joyful time of year, for many of us, they can also be super stressful. We have family in from out of town, so many things to get done and not enough time to do them, and so many things to buy! But if you’re intentional and take a few preventative measures, your holiday can be a lot less stressful. These 5 tips for a less stressful holiday can help.
5 Tips for a Less Stressful Holiday
Today I’m super excited to be collaborating with some of my dearest blog friends on a series of posts to help you have an incredible, Intentional Christmas! We have created super helpful articles on intentional finance, relationships, planning a smooth a joyful holiday.
I’ve linked to all of them at the end of this post so hang around until the end so you can benefit from our Intentional Christmas Series!
Before you decide which of these tips you want to apply to your holiday, reflect on your past holidays and think about what has stressed you out the much. Are you scrambling at the last minute to get everything done? Do you struggle to afford everything?
Then, decide based on your experiences which of these tips would have the biggest impact for you and apply those tips first!
The best thing you can do to avoid the overwhelm of the holidays is to make a plan ahead of time.
You should plan your budget, your time, and decide on your priorities.
List out everything that you have to get done, then go back through your list and give each item a number based on how important it is to you. Make sure you plan for those things to get done first.
Carve out specific time in your schedule to work on holiday related tasks.
Before you spend a dime on the holidays, you need to create a holiday budget.
You can learn how to create a simple holiday budget HERE.
Planning ahead might not be super fun (or it might be, if that’s what you’re into) but you will definitely be thanking yourself in the long run.
Get started early
I am someone who tends to wait for the very last minute with pretty much everything. And I almost always regret it.
A great way to get rid of the holiday stress that comes from the last minute scramble is to simply not wait for the last minute.
Start thinking about the holidays early. Make your plan far ahead of time. Start looking for deals for the specific items you need to buy. And start wrapping early too.
This will have a huge impact on your stress level throughout the holidays.
Don’t go broke
Much of our holiday stress comes from spending so much money. There seem to be so many things to buy and all of those purchases really add up.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
The key is to stick to your budget. I like to use my spending plan to keep myself on track with my spending.
If you’re feeling like everything costs so much and you just can’t afford it, I want you to change your thinking. Here are some resources to help you:
How to Create a Simple Christmas Budget
What should you do when you can’t afford the holidays?
These resources should help you realize that you don’t have to spend as much as you think. Be deliberate with each dollar you spend. You may end up spending less than you think.
There are so many benefits to shopping online. It allows you to avoid the crowds, the finding a parking spot madness, the long lines.
You can shop online at home in your pajamas. It’s certainly a more comfortable option.
Shopping online makes it so much easier to compare prices. You can have several tabs open on your computer and jump back and forth from website to website and compare prices as you go.
You can also save money by getting cashback on everything you buy. If you’re not getting cash back, you’re throwing money away. Find out how here.
Shopping online also saves you time. You can find what you need faster, without having to deal with all the hullabaloo at the store and it comes right to your front door.
If you enjoy shopping in an actual store and seeing things before you buy them, that’s fine too. You can incorporate some online shopping in your routine and still go to a brick and mortar store for your big purchases.
Remember what really matters
Throughout all of the holiday fuss, remember what really matters. Your family, your loved ones and the precious memories that you’re making with them.
Think back to your best holiday memories. Were they centered around gifts, or things? Probably not. Most of us remember times spent laughing with loved ones, just spending time together.
During the holidays we may get to see family members that we don’t usually see during the year. While that may come with some stress, it should also be something we enjoy. Our families (probably) don’t care if our house is super clean, or if we spent a fortune on their gifts. They care about spending time with us.
Cherish these fleeting moments while you can. The holidays will come back every year, but this holiday will never come again.
I hope these 5 tips for a less stressful holiday help you relax and enjoy the holidays this year. Making it a point to plan ahead, get started early, stay on top of our spending, shop online when we can and most importantly, remember what matters the most will go a long way to make our holidays less stressful and more joyful.
And I know it’s instinctual to put everyone else first and put yourself last. But you should not be last. Don’t forget to take care of yourself during the holidays – and the rest of the year.
Keep reading about ways to have a fabulous holiday this year with our Intentional Christmas Series. Here are all the other articles, written by other wonderful blogger friends of mine that will help you have a special Christmas! Enjoy!
How to have a Debt Free Christmas in 7 Easy Steps from Amy at Deliberately Here
7 Practical Tips to Love your Neighbors this Christmas from Isabel at Family Life Blog
the kindness elves, encourage the true spirit of Christmas with this fun family tradition
from Erin at notice the LITTLE things
All of your tips are spot on! Getting started early and being intentional takes so much of the stress and worry away from what should be a happy, wonderful season.
Planning ahead doesn’t take much time and it saves your sanity as well as your pocket book. 🙂
Isabel @ Family Life Blog says
The one thing I should totally do more of is planning ahead. I always feel like I’m gonna waste time by taking a few minutes of my day to plan things out. I always want to just go go go… but every single time I do it, I see how valuable it is in anything I’m doing and how I actually end up saving a ton of time. I’ve gotten a lot better at it over the years, but I still struggle with it a lot. Reading about it over and over again is actually a wonderful reminder to me! Thanks for sharing this, friend!
planning ahead! i am trying so hard to do this this year! when i buy things last minute or say yes to things last minute i feel like things spiral out of control. thank you for making the process feel easier with these simple steps. i need to refer back to my budget workbook for your holiday page! awesome ideas as usual!