How to Mental Prep for the Holiday Season

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It’s that time of year again, where we seem to stumble upon an endless holiday season. For most people, this is an exciting time filled with traditions and gatherings. We start with Halloween, move on to Thanksgiving, speed into Christmas, and finally it comes to a close with New Years.

During this exciting time, you may become stressed out to the point where you burn yourself out. There’s the strain of traveling, being a host, and cleaning up after everyone’s mess. Maintaining a budget can also become a burden on your emotional and mental wellbeing. Furthermore,  there’s the stress to stay away from all the sweets and the pressure to make it a realistic New Year’s resolution. With so much going on, it’s not unexpected that you’ll wear yourself out.

Luckily, there are ways to prevent ‘the holiday burnout’. It’s imperative to mentally prepare yourself for the holiday season so that you can enjoy it to the fullest.  Make it a priority to prepare for the holiday season early before everything starts becoming too overwhelming. 

Stay Scheduled

Our calendars seem to fill right up between October and January. To ensure you don’t lose track of time or forget about important events, it’s crucial to stay scheduled and plan ahead. Set reminders on your phone or computer so that you’re always updated and don’t miss an event. Check your calendar each Sunday to prepare for the upcoming week’s schedule with work, home-life, and social life. It can be even worse if you forget about a tradition, so plan ahead for the events you know are definitely coming up. For example, if you know that every year you’re going to be invited to a holiday gala, rent a suit or find a dress ahead of time. Being mentally prepared for all of your upcoming commitments will help ease your mind and allow you to feel more in control.

Get Back to Your Roots

With all the stress that the holidays bring, it’s easy to forget why these holidays used to be so fun. Just because you’re an adult, doesn’t mean you have to lose the magical feeling that the holidays bring. Think back to your favorite traditions from your childhood and do them! Go to a haunted house with your friends, go ice skating with your family, whatever it is, take time away from planning and appreciate the little moments with the people who mean the most to you.

Be Realistic

Don’t give yourself the pressure of making the holiday perfect for everyone else. It’s okay to take a step back to reevaluate what truly matters and what events will actually work. If you’re having a holiday party at your house, have your friends and family contribute to making food, buying decorations or creating invitations. The best part of the holiday season is spending time with those who make you happy, and this is so much more important than making sure everything reaches an unrealistic standard.

Stand Up for Yourself

Spending time with your family and friends can be a beautiful time throughout the holidays, but it can also bring some negativity into your life. Maybe you don’t get along with your mother-in-law or your grandparents won’t stop asking when you’re going to have kids, whatever it may be, it’s important to put yourself first.

Related: How to Live with Toxic Family Members

If someone in your life has a tendency to make you feel bad about yourself or stress you out, don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. Some people in your life might be too hard to cut ties with around the holidays, but if there are toxic relatives that you can cut out of your festivities, be sure to do it. Be polite but at the same time keep your cool to show those around you that you deserve more respect.

Be Mindful of Your Budget

One of the biggest burdens during the holiday season is our finances. Our credit cards begin to wear and tear and our monthly statements increase dramatically. Instead of paying for gifts, food and holiday supplies with a credit card, and waiting to pay it off later, try implementing a personal budget ahead of time. Set some money aside during the months that you aren’t spending as much. Limit yourself to only shopping when there’s a sale happening and work on becoming a coupon enthusiast. There are definitely ways to enjoy your holidays on a strict budget and it’ll only benefit your overall wellbeing.

Set Aside Some “Me-Time”

Last, and most importantly, set aside some time for yourself. The holiday season can become extremely tolling on your mind. With in-laws staying at your house, gatherings almost every weekend and the feeling of always falling behind, it’s important to take a step back and enjoy some solitude. Set aside some “me-time” to practice being mindful. Whether it’s taking a nap, practicing yoga, or drinking some herbal tea, you’ll thank yourself later.

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