Well hello, hello!
Hope your December is progressing well after finals, shopping, life, etc. As of yesterday, I have officially finished my first semester of grad school!! As a student, fall semester has always been my “roughest” as I often get distracted by the end-of-the-year madness while juggling school/finals… but do not fret! I know the holidays can be a tad bit too draining with an abundance of social events on your calendar, but here are some quick tips on how to have a stress-free holiday while easing into the new year –
If you’re hosting an event, prep as much as you can before the event.
This usually helps especially if you work a 9-5, have a family, balancing school, etc. And know that it is OKAY to not have everything homemade. It’s not the end of the world if you choose to buy that Spiced Cider from Trader Joe’s or decide to buy microwaveable mashed potatoes. LOL, I have no shame in admitting my entire Thanksgiving dinner was all thanks to TJ (and a little bit of my domestic skills… LOL).
You also don’t have to spend a lot of time decorating the table. You can rely on greenery for decorations or even use them as place cards. This also helps you save money, another stress-free tip! Whoohoo!
Say no when you begin to feel bombarded with activities
Socializing has now become a chore. As much as I enjoy spending time with people, I also need my “me time” to simply unwind and refocus. Call me antisocial, but it has honestly helped me grow and improve my interactions with others the next day. There is such a thing as over-socializing, so don’t feel obligated to be present at everything you’re invited to. I remember following the advice of my then-manager, “Try not to turn down any invitation.” I was 19 back then. I said yes to everything, assumed friendship automatically from even the slightest interactions, and felt burnt out in the end. Seriously, NO is a beautiful thing.
Following the previous tip, be mindful and spend time with those whom make you feel a certain way. Ask yourself, how does this person make me feel? Remember, the holidays are for spending time with loved ones. It shouldn’t have to feel “heavy” when you’re around those who radiate reciprocal vibes. Also, clean out your social media. I’ve unfollowed about 10 people yesterday… most of whom I’ve had no real connection with and that’s totally okay. You don’t have to connect with everybody. I wanted to curate my news feed to things I wanted to see, things that would make me feel HAPPY and not down.
Talk it out
We’re constantly on our phones anyway, so why not download some useful apps? I was recently introduced to Talkspace – an app designed to serve as therapy. I’m all for mental health (ding ding!), hence why I value talking things out, blogging, etc. Talkspace allows you to connect with a certified professional via texting or video calls. There is a monthly charge though (lowest is $32/week for unlimited messaging therapy). If you’re not big on this, reach out to your primary care provider and get a referral to see a therapist. There is no shame in seeing a therapist, and I really want to enforce that. In fact, talking is in. Talking is the new black. Or send me an email and I’d be happy to chat!
I won’t lie, I love giving gifts; however, there is a limit. I’m all for experiences, so instead of stressing over wish lists this holiday, why not spend it creating an experience for them? Adding a personal touch also brings sentiment, which is the whole point of the holidays. Let us not get clouded by capitalism.
Prioritize your health
I know we can get overwhelmed and “forget” to eat/drink water. Just be sure to meal prep accordingly, or even download another app called Waterlogged. It tracks how much water you’ve consumed that day, so you could be more mindful of your water consumption.
Have a good time! Laugh a lot, be merry. Drink egg nog. It seriously is the most wonderful time of the year. Spread love to those around you, and reach out to those who won’t be home during the holidays.