The holidays are here! As you get into the spirit of the season, it’s hard to ignore the hailstorm of glittery magazine ads, TV commercials and gift lists. So it’s barely surprising that this time meant for focus on family, appreciation and sharing tends to turn into a combination stressfest-slash-spending spree.
Fortunately, it’s easy to try a different kind of holiday this year, one that involves less over-commitment, guilt and anxiety.
When you focus on giving your attention and intention to the ones you love (beginning with you!), less stress and more joy will naturally follow.
Here are 3 steps to a holiday happiness makeover, no inebriates required:
1. Make your happiness a priority!
Overcommitment is one of the major causes of stress and stress leads to unhappiness. It’s okay to set limits for yourself and uphold them, which sometimes means having to say no. As explained in The Happiness Project: One of the best ways to make yourself happy is to make other people happy; One of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy yourself.
2. Presence over perfection.
We’re so bombarded with media images at this time of year, all designed by the best minds in the business to make us feel the need to achieve a certain level of perfection. Decide what is important for your family and make that the center of your celebration. When we make a conscious decision to appreciate what’s most important, a lot of the little things that otherwise stress us out become less noticeable.
3. Skip the super-size….on everything!
Shop less. You’ll have more time, extra money and create less waste. We’re so programmed to believe we have to meet some set of expectations that may not even be accurately understood, we often unnecessarily overdo it.
Communicate with people you’re exchanging gifts with and see if down-sizing is an option. Or if not, get creative. Coupons for activities together (your treat), resale gifts or even home-made items make meaningful, less expensive gifts.
There are so many ways to reduce spending and save time over the holidays, reducing your consumption is just one of them.
However you decide to do it; wishing you presence and joy all season long!