The Ultimate Cheat Sheet to Get the Most Out of This Holiday Season


Article by: Mourine Achieng'

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The holiday season is characterised by a lot of fun activities. The pressure that comes with shopping, hosting people, organising parties, and preparing meals can overwhelm you. If you are not careful, this festive season will pass by without you enjoying it. So, to help you get the most during this fun yet stressful time, here are seven things to keep in check.  

Know when and how to say no

The holiday season is marked by parties, family gatherings, and invitations to attend different events. You might find yourself juggling between family time and a dozen other activities, which will leave you exhausted and looking forward to January.

This is the exact opposite of what a holiday should be about. It’s great to enjoy all the events, but it’s equally important to know when your plate is overflowing. Muster the courage to say no when your schedule is overstretched. 

To avoid the awkwardness that comes with refusing an invitation, know how to say no. This is important because most of the invitations and requests will come from family and friends. You don’t want to jeopardise your relationship. So, be kind, compliment, and appreciate the offer before you say no. Don’t forget to explain why you won’t take part. 

Whatever you are doing, be present

Christmas and new year celebrations are packed with family events. You’ll have a lot going on. You’ll be planning, cooking, or preparing stuff that you barely enjoy. You may also find yourself worrying about the next thing on the schedule. 

So, be deliberate about everything you do this holiday season. Ensure your mind is focused on the task at hand or the event in session. Resist the temptation to think of dinner while you are out having fun as a family. Be mindful and focus on the here and now. This will help you enjoy every moment with your loved ones. You’ll also be productive and minimise the stress associated with thinking about future events. 

Have fun activities planned for a get-together

Families are complicated, and more often than not, every family member will have a different definition of what a fun family activity looks like. So, to avoid last-minute stress, plan activities in advance. Let everyone know what the plans are and what is expected of them. This way, you can tame the difficult family members in advance.

While thinking of the right activities, come up with things that most people enjoy. Perhaps a movie, a day out camping, outdoor games, or even go through the family photo album and reminisce about those good old days. The point is lining up fun things that will bring the family together since it might take a while before you meet again. 

Set boundaries

Setting boundaries is paramount during holidays. You must decide in advance your limits and let those around you know the far you can go. 

So, before you dive deep into the festive season, decide in advance the following; What time will you call it a night? At what point will it be overindulgence? What’s your limit on spending? How much time will you spend on social media? 

The best way to go about this task is to outline your areas of weaknesses. If you are always accepting all-night party invites, set a limit of how many you can attend in a week. If you stay out late, give yourself a curfew time. If it’s social media that’s eating your family time, dedicate a specific duration for social activities beyond which you must give someone your phone. 

As you set boundaries, don’t be too strict. Allow yourself to explore places, network, and have fun with those around you. Stretch out of your comfort zone a bit. 

Plan for shopping in advance

The one thing that’s common with festivities is the many offers ranging from clothes to cutlery to electronics. Your social media feeds will stream with many products and services with free home delivery. The temptation to purchase these things is often overwhelming. If you haven’t planned your shopping, you’ll buy things you don’t need. 

So, have a list of all the things you should buy for the holidays. Let this list be your reference point when shopping. If it’s not on the list, you are not buying it. The exception could be something you had planned to buy in the future, but you decide to buy it now because of the discount. Again, be wary when the exception goes beyond two products. 

Gift yourself 

As sweet as it feels when others acknowledge our efforts and role in their life, it might take forever to get that one person who puts that appreciation into a gift. And so this holiday season, acknowledge your hard work, dedication, and commitment throughout the year. Gift yourself something. 

You can have a personal time in an exotic place, enjoy a spa massage, shop for stunning outfits, buy a phone, get a PC game, or a gift card. Appreciate yourself with anything that you find meaningful or what you enjoy.