I know you can feel it. The slow roar of the chaos that is about to kick in and officially bring us into the 2016 Holiday Season. For those of us already riding an emotional roller coaster, it’s enough to really cause a lot of stress and anxiety. Here are a few tips to stay sane and savor as we head toward the climax of the next few weeks:
Plan plan plan. If you have gatherings to attend, gifts to buy, or people to host, do your best to plan ahead so you don’t find yourself in a stressful situation, or trying to get things done at the last minute.
Practice acceptance. There is no need to try to achieve any vision of a holiday you may have seen on Pinterest. Accept what happens. Know what you can and can’t control. Try to be ok when things don’t go according to plan.
Schedule time for yourself. The holidays drain your energy and it can be even more draining if you are grieving a loss . Don’t feel obligated to accept every invitation. Take time alone to decompress, pray, meditate. Do what you need to do for you.
Share the holiday spirit. Something as simple as showing someone kindness — compliment a stranger, let a fellow driver in while on the road, send a card or email to someone who has helped you this last year.
Take a pass on holiday obligations. If you don’t want to attend a holiday party, don’t. If the thought of hosting Aunt Bethany and Uncle Lewis for three nights is completely overwhelming, direct them to Airbnb or your sister’s house this year. It’s perfectly acceptable to say “no”.
Remember what matters. What makes for a happy holiday, and what does that look like to you facing this time without the child you are missing? That is for you to decide — no one else. Focus on the things that matter to you and fill you up. No matter what that looks like.