The holidays are a beautiful time of the year.
Everyone seems to be in a kind mood, the air is full of excitement, and the lighting amplifies the ecstatic atmosphere everywhere you turn.
However, underneath the joys, the smiles and the glitter lies challenges and stressful situations that may make you not enjoy the holidays as much.
You have gifts to give, parties to plan and all this has to fit within a specific budget.
In this scenario, how do you get everything done without piling up the stress and taking the fun out of holiday planning?
How do you reduce holiday stress and anxiety in the pre and post-planning phase?
In this article, I share 8 tips to help you reduce holiday stress and anxiety this year, and maximize your budget as well despite the pandemic.
Tips for Stress-Free Planning Before the Holidays
1. Have a Clear Budget
You need to know how much you can spend on the holidays. Have a budget in mind and ensure that you stick with it.
Do not be swayed to go out of your budget. Have it with you whenever you are trying to spend money on anything for the holidays.
Remember you have a life to come back to after the holidays.
For help with planning and budgeting for the holidays, check out this free digital gift planning organizer which also includes a budget.
You will need a few things to make your holiday special. You should have a checklist ready and check off items from this list as you buy them.
This prevents impulse purchases and keeps you on track with your planning. The digital gift organizer includes a checklist as well.
3. Shop for Gifts Early
If you know what gifts to get your loved ones for the holiday, it would be a good idea to purchase these gifts as early as possible.
Gifts tend to become more expensive as the holiday season approaches. You will be able to save some money this way.
Be on the lookout for sales codes, discounts, and coupons as well. Don’t sleep on buying your gifts through Rakuten.
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4. Ask Others to Chip In
There are a lot of activities to get through before the holidays. Even if you’re a perfectionist, there’s no need to do everything by yourself.
Ask your family members to chip in where possible. Learn to delegate some of the more mundane tasks during the preparation phase.
Tips for Staying Stress-Free During the holidays
5. Take Things Easy
You do not need to spend your time at large parties or with groups of people over the holidays, especially with the ongoing pandemic.
Right now, small, intimate groups are more fulfilling than large ones. Gather the people close to you and plan a few activities together.
It may be as simple as sharing meals, watching movies together, singing and dancing, or playing trivia games.
6. Maintain a Regular Schedule
With all the excitement going on around you, it might be hard to maintain your regular schedule.
Try not to be too extreme when enjoying yourself during the holidays. Eat well, get enough sleep, and maintain a regular exercise routine.
7. Get Yourself Something Nice
Don’t forget you. The gift you get for yourself does not need to be expensive. The most important bit is that it should have some form of personal connection.
Get something you will value and one that will have a sentimental connection to you as a way of appreciating yourself for all the hard work you do.
You may also want to get yourself some nice pampering gifts. For self-care gift ideas, check out Quarantine Self-Care Gift Basket Ideas.
8. Learn to Say No & Be Firm With It
You do not have to agree to everything everyone tells you to do during this period. You can’t make everybody happy. You’re not chocolate!
By learning to say no, you will be giving yourself the space you need without feeling as if you are carrying the world on your shoulders.