One fantastic way to relieve stress is to read a book. Whether you read a book with your children or curl up with a cozy mystery, take yourself to another place and time for a while. Forget about wrapping that pile of gifts or what needs to be baked for at least an hour. You will find yourself a little more relaxed when you are ready to start the Christmas rush again.
If you find a little time to yourself and start feeling a bit ragged, take a power nap. Power naps can last anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, depending on how tired you are. Not only will you feel more refreshed, but you are more alert.
Don't feel you have to tackle everything by yourself. Enlist family and friends to help with cooking/baking, shopping (with a detailed list of what exactly they need to buy), and even decorating. Let the kids help with trimming the tree and cook or bake in the kitchen. To make it more fun, bribe any helpers with a move night-in full of hot cocoa and their favorite movies!
If you are worried about your Holiday budget, set a reasonable amount for each gift. Most years, our family allocates each gift at no more than $20 (if there are more than one gift per person) or combine several $20 gift ideas into one major gift that they can enjoy all year long. You can also consider having a Kris Kringle, where everyone draws a name out of a hat and buys a present only for that person. If you are going over to a relative's (like Grandma's house) for Christmas Eve, don't feel you have to bring a gift for everyone. If you can't afford it this year, your family will understand!
Last but certainly not least: Have fun! Don't turn wrapping gift or decorating the tree a chore. Turn on some jolly tunes, round up the kids, and have a gift wrapping or tree trimming party. When you're done, turn off the lights and share some of your favorite Christmas memories!
How do you stay stress free around the Holidays?