In preparing for the Holidays, one of the keys to taking control and reducing stress is to begin with the end in mind.
Think about the outcome you want from your holiday celebrations. Is it a feeling of connection, love, joy, peace?
Work back from the outcome to identify the actions that that will create that outcome. Be flexible and selective to get the holiday feeling you want.
Decide what’s most important to you.. Is it food, gifts, decorations or connecting with others? Focus your time and energy on the activities that are most meaningful.
Simplify or eliminate some of the traditional holiday tasks so meaningful moments can shine. Examples: Streamline decorations; buy cookies instead of baking, put gifts in bags instead of wrapping.
Be a receiver. It is as blessed to receive as to give. Allowing others to help gives them the opportunity to feel good too. Ask for help not out of deficiency, but rather out of the generosity of knowing that others will feel good helping. Example: Make your holiday dinner an opportunity for each family member to contribute their signature dish rather than do it all yourself.
Save money, give meaning. The gift of time and care can be more treasured and valuable than a purchased present. Sharing your time or talent is rewarding for both of giver and receiver. One year I took up a neighborhood collectionfor the family of a sick child and had Santa deliver the cash. They never knew from where the gift came. This is still my favorite Christmas memory!
Create the holiday feelingyou want this season by deciding on the outcome first, being flexible, selective and creative about choosing the tasks that serve your outcome and nurturing yourself and others by sharing your special gift of caring.
I’mvisioning a very happy holiday for you and your loved ones!