Sunday, November 1, 2015

Imagine A Stress Less Holiday

Last year, I prepared for Christmas early. I wrote about it here on Organized Friends last year. It made such a difference on my stress level. And I don't really think I was that stressed in all the years before. The preparations made such a difference that I really felt I had time those last two weeks to ten days before Christmas to really enjoy the season.

I'm going to do it again!

And you can follow along. 

I feel like the first step for me is to consider what a stress free less holiday looks and feels like. What do I really like about the holiday? Is there anything time consuming I may want to let go of, or a way to do it easier? Are there things I do each year that I dislike?  And if I don't know what it is I might consider what it is not.

  • It is time with family.
  • It is relaxing in our decorated home.
  • It is baking.
  • It is giving gifts those we are closest to
  • It is listening to holiday music.
  • It is decorating simply and with what we have (white lights required).
  • It is not shopping in stores every weekend and spare moment.
  • It is not buying for everyone I'm acquainted with.
  • It is not being obligated to a lot of outside events.
  • It is not spending a lot of money.
That's my first list of thoughts. And then I could consider those a little further, considering what kinds of things I'd like to do with my family that could also be considered relaxing or at least not stressful. And, of course, it isn't a bad idea to discuss your ideas and thoughts with your family. They may have their own ideas about what the holiday should look like. Come to an agreement now, so arguments don't come up later. 

Last year, I did send Christmas cards with a picture of our daughters. I printed the photos for less than $3 and spent about $17 on postage. I already had the cards purchased on clearance from the year prior. I haven't decided if spending the $20 is what I want to do this year. I have a choice. Many of those we send cards to our on Facebook or have an email address. I could still send a greeting for free or use a greeting card service that may send them for even less than mailing. 

Our list of people we buy gifts for is getting smaller each year. And that is by choice because I think each year we know more people and love them well enough to give a gift. But trying to find the right gift at the right price. That is stressful. I like to give a gift when I'm inspired rather than feeling an obligation because of the time of year. Or better yet, I'd rather just spend time with them!

That's where I am. Just the beginning of planning what I want the season to feel like. 

Do you find yourself wanting a stress less Christmas? What does that look like for you? Consider now what that might be and make a plan to make it happen.


  1. I entirely understand and embrace the idea of giving gifts that are inspired versus just needing to find something because you *have* to. I would much rather receive something that is meaningful and small than a ton of things that are just bought because it's Christmas - and I know this to be true, because I've been in that situation!
    I did decide to do Christmas cards this year, as I haven't in a few years, and had recently gotten some new stamps and wanted a play with them. They're ready to be addressed and written in at this point! And, somehow, we have a ton of stamps that we have nothing to use for, so no out of pocket cost, woo!
    I very much so want a stress-less Christmas, and have done everything I can at this point to make it be that way. The goal is to have everything sorted well before Christmas, so there will be time to actually enjoy it while it's here, versus worrying last minute (which is my normal route!).

    1. Nice to hear you already know about the stress less Christmas route. Cards are one thing that really can be done early with a little planning.