Has stress taken the fun out of your holidays? Put the “jolly” back in your holidays and create cherished holiday memories with these proven strategies.

  • Acknowledge that everything doesn’t need to be perfect.
  • Start holiday planning and preparations earlier.
  • Simplify wherever you can when planning and holding festive celebrations.
  • Stick to your budget.
  • Scale down your holiday plans.
  • Ponder what you really want to do to celebrate the holidays.
  • Talk with family members and friends about what they want to do.
  • Plan celebrations that express what the holidays truly mean for you.
  • Identify old family traditions. Which ones do you love?
  • Opt to keep holiday traditions that bring you joy and happiness.
  • Give yourself permission to let go of old traditions that you aren’t fond of.
  • Establish start and end times for parties.
  • Take shortcuts like buying pre-made pies to save time.
  • Examine options for pre-made meals or catering services.
  • Promptly ask for help when you need it.
  • Inform all prospective attendees of your holiday plans in advance.
  • Discuss challenging issues in advance with a person who tends to create tension.
  • Use place cards to assign seating in efforts to avoid tension-filled holiday gatherings.
  • Short-circuit disagreeable family discussions by interrupting or changing the subject.
  • Make a gift list, considering the amount of money you can comfortably spend.
  • Cut down your gift list.
  • Shop early and make notes about where to get low-cost gifts.
  • Ask for gift suggestions from the people on your gift list.
  • Consider giving gift cards to save time and precious energy.
  • Suggest a family name-drawing to reduce gift expenditures.
  • Reduce the amount of money you spend overall on the holidays and per gift.
  • Avoid making credit card purchases as much as possible.
  • Save money by making homemade food gifts.
  • Shop early and place gifts in a gift drawer so you’ll be ready for the holidays.
  • Schedule time to be with your kids for some special holiday moments.
  • Keep the kids busy with holiday crafts. They’ll enjoy it and you can get more done.
  • Take time daily to meditate, even if only for a few minutes.

Stress-Free Holiday Traveling

  • Plan holiday travel itineraries in advance.
  • Travel during off-peak hours.
  • Start out well-rested.
  • Build-in extra money to your travel budget in case of emergencies.
  • Arrive at the airport or other station early to more easily take care of last-minute challenges.
  • Expect to run into snags.
  • Pack light and carry on your bag, rather than checking it.
  • Allow extra time to travel from place to place and expect heavy traffic.
  • Send your gifts in advance or take gift cards.
  • Limit alcohol and caffeine.
  • Pack plenty of healthy snacks that travel well without refrigeration.
  • Bring plenty of things to keep the kids happily occupied.
  • Make waiting times go faster and regain a happy holiday feeling by meditating.
  • Use portable meditation props, like a favorite image on your smartphone or tablet.
  • Plan to arrive at your holiday destination rested and excited to share your holidays with loved ones.

Meditation for Holiday Travel

  • Sit up straight and relax your shoulders.
  • Let distracting thoughts dissolve away as you focus on deep breathing.
  • Think about your destination and the loved ones you’ll be visiting.
  • Remember that you’re surrounded by people making similar plans – just like you.
  • Once you’re feeling relaxed and happy, let go of the details and enjoy that warm feeling.
  • Imagine wrapping up those good feelings and presenting them to everyone around you.
  • Gradually return your attention to the present moment.
  • Remind yourself of the fellowship you felt while meditating.

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Wishing you a happy & healthy holidays!

Mayra – Your Nutrition Dork Guide 🙂