The holidays are just around the corner, and you know what that means. Family, parties, gifts, and emotions. It’s possible to have your holiday marketing and shipping strategies locked down and totally figured out without planning for the time you’re not working. Let’s go through some tips to help us all enjoy the holidays!
Setting intentions of what you want to do and how you want to be can help you by setting clear goals to focus on. You may want to do things, like travel or throw a party. These can be very stressful around the holidays, so think of ways to take some stress out of the equation. Talk to a travel agency to coordinate your vacation, or host a potluck to keep from having to prepare all the food at your party.
During the holidays, you can take the opportunity to be more patient, a better listener, or more present with your family. If you’re running a small business, being present can be challenging. You want to keep things running smoothly, while your family wants to spend quality time with you. For business emails, set up an auto-responder with a secondary, high-priority email address where people can contact you for urgent issues. Find other ways to disconnect from the business as much as possible. Schedule 10 minutes every so often when you can duck out to return calls or emails.
When you’re making plans for the holidays, most people want everything to be “perfect.” But the reality is, people who don’t get along for 11 months of the year won’t magically become saints overnight. Trying to have the perfect party, gifts, and food will put a lot of pressure on you. Instead of perfection, aim for happiness. Disappointment shows up when there’s a gap between our expectations and reality. When you expect perfection, the outcome is almost always disappointment.
“Relaxed and happy is so much more enjoyable than perfect and pressured,” says Andra Medea, author of Conflict Unraveled: Fixing Problems at Work and in Families and Going Home without Going Crazy: How to Get Along with Your Parents and Family (Even When They Push Your Buttons).
Give yourself permission to laugh when things go wrong.
Plan for Fun
Instead of thinking about what you HAVE TO do, think of the things you’ll enjoy doing. Make those a priority. Think of what your family will get the most joy out of, even if they’re small things. Write down at least five things and make time for them.
Routines make us feel comfortable and in control. When those get broken, it adds to the stress of the holidays. Stick with your routines, make sure to exercise and get enough sleep. If these aren’t your routines, use the holidays to get those routines started, especially if you have time off. Sleep and exercise will help you physically, mentally, and emotionally, during the holidays and throughout the year.
The holidays are an intense time that can be filled with stress or joy. Plan ahead, be present, and prioritize happiness over perfection.