The holiday season can be both an enjoyable time of year as well as an extremely stressful time! Between finances, family drama, and a stretched social calendar, it’s no wonder many people don’t look forward to the season. Going into debt for the holidays is a one way ticket to increased stress for many months to come, although it doesn’t have to be a necessary component.

Creating a financial action plan can lighten the load. Whether you need to honestly spread out gift purchases over strategic paychecks or consider your gift options to specific people, go into it with a plan! Sometimes creating a gift with love can be extremely meaningful and personal to the gift receiver and can reduce costs considerably. Whether it be via baking, crocheting, or anything else, a handmade gift has many benefits.

When it comes to family drama, often the best prescribed medicine is taking time for yourself. Take a night off from planning to relax and do what you enjoy the most. Whether that be watching your favorite movie or TV show or spending time family and friends, using this night to de-stress and truly enjoy yourself will lighten the emotional load of the season.

Keeping to a routine is also extremely beneficial. If you have an exercise routine or follow a specific nutritional regimen, do not drop it during the holidays! There may be more days than usual that you might have to stray from your diet or cut your workout short, but by sticking to your year-round routine most days of the week, you will not lose sight of your goals and will feel less regretful come the new year. Exercising will also give you something to focus on rather than the negative aspects of the season.

The holidays are going to be stressful if you make them stressful. Certainly many things are out of our control, but by going into the season with a plan, you will make the season as enjoyable as possible!

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