I want to know why people get so stressed out about Christmas. Is it:
1. Spending time with family when there’s at least one that you really don’t like?
2. Trying to find the perfect gift?
3. Buying things you can’t afford?
4. Or is it trying to buy the perfect gift you can’t afford for someone you don’t like?
I know that there can be stress and anxiety associated with the holiday season, regardless of your religious affiliation. Whether it be financial stress, stress about running out of time, or just the stress of having to see all those people, stress is generally not a good feeling. I personally would love to be able to give each person on my gift list that special something that would wow their socks off. But I’m a realist, and I know that’s not going to happen. I don’t have that special intuitiveness that tells me what everyone loves, especially those that I only see once or twice a year. I just have to settle with a gift that lets them know I was thinking of them.
And for those people you have to put up with at your celebration, just try to give thanks that you don’t have to live with them. (If you do, you need a lot more help than my blog can offer!) Try to be amiable, and not get involved with their drama. If they try to start something, just say, “Excuse me”, and walk away. It may sound rude, but its much nicer than punching them.
As far as financial stress is concerned, if you can’t afford it, don’t buy it. Sounds simple enough. It can be hard, but there are so many nice hand-made gifts one can give that cost much less than buying that gift. Learn how to crochet, make handmade cards, make some cookies and candy, and give those instead. Chances are, your family knows you are struggling and don’t want to add to your burden! No one wants you to go into debt to buy them a trinket. Your presence is always more important than the presents.
So try not to let the holidays stress you out. Grab a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or whatever is your drink of preference, and look through those old photos of Christmas past. I rarely remember what I got for gifts, but I always treasure the memories of those who are no longer with us.