By Reagan Greenwood
The holidays are just around the corner. Snow has started falling in many parts of the United States and the temperatures are dropping. Commercials are filled with deals for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, encouraging everyone to finish up those holiday wish lists. Yes, it’s that time of year. Some make call it “wonderful” while others call it “terrible.” Whichever one you may be, here are some tips to keep in mind during the holiday season.
- Do not go into debt. Depending on how you spend the holidays, gifts claim importance. However, the holiday season only lasts a couple months. The new remote control plane you bought for five-year-old Benny is only going to be appreciated until he opens his next gift. You do not need to spend all of your money and then some just to please those around you. Simple, thoughtful gifts are important, too. Think practical. Is the expensive gift you are buying going to be used enough to get its money’s worth? If not, don’t buy it. No matter how special your loved ones are, no gift is worth the stress of going into debt for the next few months.
- Say no. You do not have to do everything, whether it is cooking two desserts and a side dish, or traveling across the country for the holidays. Traveling is tiresome, especially with children. Plus, with the cold weather, many kids are fighting off the cold or flu. There is no need to spread any illnesses. If stress outweighs enjoyment, it may be best to decline and stay home.
- Family isn’t necessary. Yes, family is important, but if going home and visiting the family for the holidays causes you to have more stress, anxiety, or depression, do not go. You must take care of your mental and physical health first. All families are different. Just because everyone else is chowing down on apple pie with their grandparents does not mean that you have to as well.
- Take a break. If you do decide to spend the holidays with your family and find yourself getting stressed or annoyed, exit. Excuse yourself from the conversation you are having, grab a drink, and step into a quieter room. This could be the bathroom, a bedroom, or even the back yard. Find a dog to love on. Give yourself five to ten minutes of alone time. This will allow you to recharge and brace yourself for the next game of 20 Questions.
- Be thankful. Yes, it may be hard to do so when you have three babies crying in your ears and your aunt’s chihuahua peeing on your new sweater, but think about all the things you have the opportunity to experience and all the things you don’t have to. Even if your Uncle Joe burnt the ham, at least there is food on the table to enjoy.
Edited by Emily Chance