Lots of parents are especially stressed in the final weeks of December. How can we help? Sometimes a simple suggestion is all it takes to give a parent the permission to hit the reset button on the holiday season:
- Simplify. Reduce the number of gifts you give. Don’t worry about sending cards this year. Cut out a few of the tasks you find stressful so you can focus on things that actually bring you (and your family) joy.
- Give experiences, not things. Crowds, traffic and time constraints can make it anything but enjoyable to be shopping for last-minute items this week. Consider buying tickets to an event or passes for a local museum that you can enjoy together in the new year.
- Remember it’s okay to say no. If a quiet evening at home wrapping gifts and watching a movie is what your family needs, say NO to the party you were supposed to attend. Protect your time (and sanity) by scheduling downtime this week when you and your children need it most.
- Offer the gift of creativity (and time with you!) Let kids take the lead for a last-minute task this week, like decorating cookies, wrapping gifts or signing cards. The point is not perfection, but traditions that focus on time together and being kind and generous to those you love.
- Take care of yourself. Are you staying active, getting fresh air and eating healthy? Have you taken a few moments to read, talk with a friend, pray or meditate?
We invite you to download and share our Holiday Stress fact sheet in ENGLISH or SPANISH to share with the parents you know. Words of encouragement and understanding can be a wonderful gift this time of year!