Some evil person posted this Elf meme on their Facebook feed the other day and I wanted to unfriend them but they are related to me and I like them.
Unfriending people can add additional stress at the holidays, and this article is all about holiday de-stressing.
In keeping with the 12 Days of Christmas, I am proposing 12 Steps to De-stress for the Holidays:
Step 1: To begin take a deep cleansing breath.
Step 2: After you remember to start breathing again, I want you to say these words, “Happiness is the greatest gift I can give. A stressed out me does not make a holiday happy. I will not add unhappiness to my holidays.”
See. Don’t you feel better?
Step 3: Write down one gift you will give yourself. (This does not have to be a material thing.)
Step 4: Make a list of all the other people for whom you want and/or need to get gifts. (These do not have to be material things.)
Step 5: Make a calendar of all events you KNOW will absolutely be on your agenda.
Step 6: Repeat Steps 1 & 2.
Step 7: Establish a budget.
- How much will you spend on each person?
- How much do you plan to give to your church or charities?
- How much should you plan to spend on extra party foods and drinks?
- How much are your travel costs?
Add those costs up.
Step 8: Repeat Steps 1 & 2. Continue reading “Start Holiday De-Stressing Now”
When the Tree is Gone via Daily Prompt: Gone
Every year my children and I enjoy decorating our home for the Christmas holiday. Even my husband perks up at the sight of the lights. I try to not put the tree up too early so as to protect the magic its lighting brings. After the feast of the Epiphany (the wise men’s arrival), I dutifully take down all the decorations.
The emptiness created by the absence of tree, garland, and lights gives our home an incomplete feel. The rooms seem stark and the light seems cold. What is it about the time after the tree is gone that darkens our day?
When the tree is gone, the spirit of Christmas is not plainly visible. When the tree is gone, the remembrance of all those Christmas wishes fades. When the tree is gone, the twinkle of Santa’s magic dims and we forget about that whole peace on Earth and goodwill towards men thing. Plus, when the tree is gone, I find it a lot harder to just sit in my arm chair and read a book or watch my kids play. It’s as if the tree is a holiday anchor that holds us in place and reminds us to remain steadfast in the enjoyment of our home and family.
I challenge you to keep the Christmas spirit alive in your actions and words. Take time to sit in your favorite chair and read a book or snuggle with a loved one. Continue in your efforts to bring peace to the lives of those you encounter and yourself. Give the gifts of understanding and kindness in all you do.
Just because there isn’t a tree standing in your living room doesn’t mean you have to become a scrooge. Find joy in the simple elements of each day and you won’t have time to miss that silly old tree.
When the tree is gone, continue to shine as a light for others each day. Put some holiday in your heart and let your Intentergy keep the spirits of others alive and well.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. If you still have your tree up, that’s cool.