1. Holiday cards. Be unique. Do your holiday cards in January when no one expects them. If you got cards in January, how would it feel? Different? Unique? Fun? In fact, try the end of January to be really unique.
2. Buy foods that are not fattening. Bring them with you wherever you go so you have them when you need them – try almonds, oranges, apples or bananas. Protein bars are good to take on the road or on errands so you don’t get tempted to eat at fast food places. Good nutrition goes a long way to keep you full of energy and the extra pounds off. Did you know that eating sugar signals your immune system to shut down? No wonder we so often get sick and have colds and flu during the holidays with all the sugar we eat.
3. Water, water, water. Take a water bottle with you wherever you go. The new research says that many times when we feel hungry, we are actually really thirsty or close to being dehydrated. Never, ever, go anywhere without a container of water. Not only will it help with hydrating you, but it is also wonderful for your skin and hair. When we are hydrated we have great energy too.
4. Money. In January you’ll receive all the bills for how you spent your money in November and December. Remember that holiday giving represents a very short part of the year, but the bills can represent many months of paying them off. Buy what you can afford. How about opening a “holiday account” in January to start saving for the 2018 holiday season? Giving of yourself and your time is your most precious gift of all.
5. Don’t do it all yourself. If you have other people in your house, let them help with all the details of getting ready for the holidays. Make a list and hang it on the refrigerator. As the tasks get done, cross them off and congratulate the person doing the task. Even little ones can help with wrapping and dusting. In fact, little ones wrapping presents makes for interesting gifts. Buy extra tape. They love tape.
6. Food preparation. Keep it simple and inexpensive. That divine cheese sauce you saw in Wolfgang Puck’s cookbook that needs 6 cheeses, an Australian sherry and curry from India will only add time, worry and expense … and it will take away from the precious time you need for other things. Find alternatives to expensive holiday food like popcorn, deviled eggs and homemade eggnog.
7. Gift buying. Six years ago I decided that I would give the same gift to everyone. I took pictures of a very pretty fall scene, put them in frames and gave them to my clients and family members. I saved hours and hours of shopping and straining my brain to try and think of unique gifts for each person. Keep it simple, sweet and from the heart – not the wallet. Do you remember what you got last year? Do you even remember what you gave for presents? All that fuss for what? Got a great surprise for everyone this year!
8. Family members. Give the gift of your time in 2018. Put an IOU in a package or stocking which is a promise of your time. Wash their car. Clean their room. The idea of giving of yourself feels so good and wonderful to receive. I asked my son-in-law for a training on my cordless drill and I found a nice little IOU for that in my stocking.
9. As you cook and clean. Take those cans of food and stuff you never use and give it away. As you wander around your home, look at your belongings see what it is that you can eliminate. If you have kids, let them contribute their stuff also. Once you have filled the box take it to your closest church, food pantry or Goodwill store. You can give in so many ways. Also, FreeCycle.org is a wonderful way to save dollars and keep dumps from filling with things that other people can use.
10. Take care of you. This one is the hardest sometimes. Sometimes we don’t even know what we need. We’re always so busy taking care of others, our jobs, our families. This may sound incredibly simple, but it works. Slowly take 3 deep breaths and close your eyes. The deep breaths help to center you, relieve anxiety, make things feel easier and actually help your body know things are going to be okay. Every book on stress starts with breathing. It’s the fastest, easiest and cheapest way to get happy and centered. Remember to breathe deeply and often. Your body will love it!
To your success,
P.S. VIP days are powerful and help you choose your next success producing actions. I have only 2 VIP days in December. Come on over to Nashville – we will have dinner and then spend the entire next day on just you and your next steps. You deserve this kind of focus and attention. Send me a note and let me know you are interested in VIPing with me. 2017 will end soon and 2018 stands ready to have you create a remarkable year. Let’s do this together!!
P.P.S. My 18th Annual NO Stress Holiday Tips just for you. My dear friends, colleagues, clients, audience members and everyone else, I have been writing this list for all these years because I have experienced all of this and more. Besides, I wanted to share with you that it is possible to have wonderful holidays, stress-free holidays, this holiday season. Click here to download your copy. Share with your friends, family, co-workers, church = anyone with holiday stress.