Happy holidays! Happy 'getting stressed out, trying to do too many things and please everyone' season. Oh, wait, that's not what the holidays are about! I'm going to to take a step back and have a calm holiday this year.
Sometimes gingerbread men will be missing a limb. The tree may have a bald spot. The kugel may not taste exactly like your grandma’s. Know what? None of it matters. Decide what's truly important to you over the holidays, and focus on that.
Once you drop the desire for Norman Rockwell levels of perfection, it gets much easier to ask for help and delegate tasks. Kids can sign the names and address holiday cards. Wrap gifts in plain brown paper and kids can stay occupied decorating with crayons and ribbon.
Stick to a budget
Much of the holiday stress people feel can be attributed to money woes. Make a list and check it twice, making sure the gifts you choose are within your budget’s reach. And when you're tempted to overspend, remember that things are rarely as meaningful as a kind thought or gesture.
Shy away from the average stuff you get at chain stores and Amazon. Visit your local bookstore or bakery to get gifts and gift certificates that really mean something.
Look for a winter farmers’ market where you can buy jars of local honey or handmade ornaments. Keep a stash in your car with some gift bags for last-minute “I can’t believe I forgot to get a gift for my kid’s teacher” type situations.
Bonus: you’re supporting small business at the same time!
Get a massage
Taking care of yourself makes you better able to take care of all the people who depend on you! Here's to a wonderful holiday low on stress and filled with fun!