3 Ways To Be Better Prepared for Christmas
Up until recently Christmas was not something I looked forward to. It was stressful and I procrastinated by sticking my head in the sand for as long as possible. Once I looked up I was inundated with a mile long list of shopping & obligations. When I finally realized the Christmas season was difficult because of the way I was handling it I was able to implement some strategies to lower my stress and anxiety. Since doing these 3 things I’ve started to enjoy the season. While the stress hasn’t completely dissipated, it is much more manageable.
3 Ways To Better Prepare For Christmas
Write Yourself A Letter/Email
Do a brain dump while everything is fresh in your mind, whether you do this as a traditional letter on paper or in the form of an email, your future self will thank you.
Write down the things you forgot like, specific types of wrapping, annual office gifts, teacher gifts, etc. Make a list of things you are okay to let go of for next year. Maybe it is neighbor gifts, baking, sending cards, etc. There are no rules stating you have to do everything and making the decision now to let some things go will lighten up your next Christmas.
In addition to what you want to let go of, make some notes of what you enjoyed and want to continue with. Jot down some ideas you or family members mentioned that you’d like to try out next Christmas. This is your letter so make it work for you.
If you decide to write an email, put Christmas 2022 in the subject line to make it easy to find. If you chose the traditional pen and paper I suggest putting the letter inside your Christmas decorations bin, it’ll be quick to find when Christmas is fresh on your mind next year.
Set Your Budget
To get an idea of what you realistically need for Christmas 2022 go over what you spent this year. Remember to look at everything related to Christmas, that includes:
Decorations (This includes your tree, wreath, etc)
Entertainment (Light shows, Nutcracker, Christmas day movie)
Groceries (Did you host, throw a party?)
Postage (Shipping gifts, Sending cards, etc.)
If possible, start setting that money aside over the next 10 months (starting in January).
Have A Family Meeting
Talk with your family about what you can let go of and also what would you like to make a priority for next year. I take as many cues from my family as possible, if they’re grumpy and grouchy about a particular activity I’d rather save myself the headache and let it go. If it is an activity you really enjoy, perhaps consider doing it with a friend instead?
My family always surprises me when I ask them for their input, whether it is for dinner ideas or a movie, it eases the decision fatigue we can find ourselves in. In addition to getting their feedback I suggest having a discussion around sharing more of the responsibility of the holiday. If there are things your family deems important, start the conversation around how they can start contributing and taking on the responsibility for some of the tasks.