The holidays are a time for family, celebrating, baking, and magical moments that will last a lifetime… right?
As a mom you can feel the pressure to make sure the social calendars are taken care of, holiday parties are Pinterest perfect, gifts are wrapped beautifully under the tree for everyone you know, and to get your family in matching pajamas with a Facebook picture to prove it.
That is a lot to put on someone during “the most wonderful time of the year!”
I admit, I feed into all of the stress at times.
Last year my son broke his wrist during the holidays, I was pregnant, and it was the first year we were spending Christmas in our new house. I felt like we had to do a million things, start new traditions, and do it with a smile. I was overly stressed. I was excited to take down our Christmas tree down on the 26th.
I couldn’t do it again. Children have an unwavering excitement for the holidays, and as a parent burning myself out well before they are over, doesn’t work for me.
Here’s how I’m avoiding holiday burnout this year
There is an abundance of things to plan and fit into the end of the year. The more we have planned out with family and friends, the less I feel overwhelmed. We even plan to talk through Christmas for next year with my in-laws, realizing our methods of Christmas past haven’t always worked the best with getting the family together.
I blocked time for wrapping and shopping this year, planned time to do things with friends, family, and for myself. Knowing we have that time in our calendar and setting goals to get things done helps with the stress, and doesn’t allow for all of that last-minute wrapping to sneak up as easily.
Keep the enjoyable holiday traditions, and throw out the rest
If you don’t enjoy it, don’t do it. That pesky little Elf that likes to run wild in everyone else’s house doesn’t have to in yours. There is pressure to do what everyone else expects during the holidays, and it can be too much for one season at times.
Choose the things that make you happy, and if that Elf happens to not travel back next year. I bet he/she can send a really nice note that reminds children it’s watching them quietly from afar.
DIY and bake as much or as little as you want
Between cooking, baking, and crafting we can spend hours or days trying to look “Insta worthy”
I love baking from scratch and trying new recipes, so my family makes time for that. I don’t bake a ton the rest of the year, but I give myself a free pass November through New Years. That is not the case for everyone. If you want to order a few dozen cookies, made by someone else, and your biggest worry is when you should pick them up, do that. Or if you enjoy making cookies, but buy frosting from the store, and that is a perfect balance for you, then choose that!
All of those beautiful wreaths on Pinterest, or those flawlessly made holiday cards you have already started receiving, can seem intimidating but are therapeutic to others. Whatever is going to keep you from feeling exhausted is a win. If Hobby Lobby’s wreath that is 50% off is easier than making your own, take that win.
Don’t feel judged for bringing a veggie platter
Or the healthy dessert, the gluten-free item, or whatever else fits your eating habits. It is darn near impossible to diet and eat healthy during the holiday season. So if you are the saint who brings the veggie platter, don’t feel bad. Know you are secretly being praised by everyone in the room who already feels the holiday weight tightening their jeans.
Cherish the little things
Whether it is watching a Christmas moviie and drinking hot chocolate, making wrapping paper elf hats, or driving around looking at Christmas lights. Each year will bring new traditions and will be a little different from the last.
Give yourself the gift of enjoying this holiday season, and don’t burn yourself out before it even begins!