Partners In Learning Blog Team

Partners In Learning Blog Team
Blog Team

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Hoping For A Stress Free Holiday

For several weeks, maybe months leading up to the holidays, many children have been lookingover the holiday catalogs that arrive in the mail or in the newspaper. Even children as young as 1 enjoy looking at the colorful pictures and adds. They see a lot of interesting things, and want many, if not all of them. Of course they won't be getting them all. But it is a hard decision sometimes as parents to decide what and how much to get our children. 

As parents, when the holidays roll around, there seems to be a sense of anxiety and stress that arrives with it. Often this stress is tied to the financial aspect. Another thing is the overwhelming part of expectations. We set our expectations so high about what the holidays are supposed to be. We’re trying to use finances and other things to meet that, but it never meets what we wanted. Then there’s sometimes the let-down and we get all the guilt that goes with that. We may even have extra high anxiety at this time. 
So try remember this...Remember that the holiday memories we cherish the most are often seen through the eyes of a child.

As an adult I need to be more realistic about how I look at the holidays. As a child,  it’s that wonderful build-up and all those gifts. As children, we’re not worried about, ‘Where does the money come from to pay for this?’ … As adults, we’re trying to often re-create that childhood experience, but the reality is we do have to think about the finances. I can’t afford to refinance the house every year to pay for Christmas.”

So try this before going out and making purchases...set a budget and realize what gifts are really going to get played with and appreciated over time. It’s also important to stick to your budget! Parents go out and buy the expensive gift (the children) wanted. They play with it for two hours and it’s done. The kid was let down and the parent was let down. 

It is also important to balance a “well-being schedule.” Make time for working out. Get enough sleep. Don’t commit to every holiday party, and when necessary, take a step back from it all. Know when you start to feel yourself reacting. If you’re starting to feel anxious about the holidays or you’re feeling overwhelmed, that’s the time you say, ‘This is too much for me right now and I need a break. As I get older, I can tell when I’m overwhelmed or feel anxious, it’s truly about walking away. Get some physical space and give yourself a chance to walk or read, something that sets your mind at ease and distracts you from what’s going on. It also helps me to have a physical, not just mental, list of what needs to be done and when. 

“We as adults have gotten to where we’re programmed to how big and important the holidays are that we forgot to have fun and like them and enjoy it.”

Also as I get older, I realize it's not so much about the presents I give or receive, it's about being with family and friends, real quality time, just hanging out and enjoying the company. 

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