Stop the Grinch and enjoy a stress free Christmas!
Do you wish for a stress free Christmas? Do you feel your stress levels rise as Christmas approaches? Maybe you even find yourself muttering under your breath, “I hate Christmas”. Watch out, you may be suffering from a touch of the Grinches…
The grumpy, anti-holiday spirit of the character has led to the term “Grinch”, which is probably derived from the French word grincheux which means “grumpy”, coming to refer to a person opposed to Christmas time celebrations or to someone with a coarse, greedy attitude. In fact, a document in the live-action film stated that “The term Grinchy shall apply when Christmas spirit is in short supply”.
(Featured image: "The Grinch (That Stole Christmas)" by Source (WP:NFCC#4). Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Grinch_(That_Stole_Christmas).jpg#/media/File:The_Grinch_(That_Stole_Christmas).jpg)
To enjoy a stress free Christmas this year you might want to try the following Happy Christmas remedies
1. SMILE for a stress free Christmas
– at everything- yes it will make your face ache after a while but it is a scientific fact that smiling releaseshappy endorphins that do improve your mood! I love this quote about the value of a smile
It costs nothing, but creates much good. It enriches those who receive it without impoverishing those who give it away. It happens in a flash but the memory of it can last forever. No one is so rich that he can get along without it. No one is too poor to feel rich when receiving it. It creates happiness in the home, fosters good will in business, and is the countersign of friends. It is rest to the weary, daylight to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad, and nature’s best antidote for trouble.
Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed, or stolen for it is something of no earthly good to anybody until it is given away willingly.
I do understand that when times are tough it may seem difficult to smile at anything- so if this is where you are, in a sad place, then you owe it to yourself to find things that make you smile. My favorite smile making things are my dogs, small children (they just find joy in the smallest of things) and nature. My husband, friends and some good books also make me smile. perhaps the Comedy channel on your TV will do the trick- a good belly laugh is great therapy for a stress free Christmas. If the family is a bit tense and making you feel stressed try a game of charades or Pictionary- becoming a little child like at Christmas is a good way to reduce stress.
2. Take time to breathe for a stress free Christmas
When we are rushing around, fixing the dinner, wrapping presents, cleaning, shopping, all those Christmas activities- we often forget to breathe properly. Seriously, we take short breaths, grabbing at air to keep us going, usually without even noticing. Just stopping for a moment and taking four deep cleansing breaths will slow your heart rate, bring much needed oxygen to your bloodstream and calm the stress. This is especially useful before you launch yourself into the shopping mall. Sit quietly and breathe in slowly, hold for a moment and then breathe out slowly. do this four times to a count of four and focus just on your breathing, nothing else. If your mind jumps to your Christmas To Do List then bring it back to your breathing. For a stress free Christmas you can do this at anytime you feel your stress levels rising. You can center yourself with a focus on your breathing and extend it to relaxing each part of your body where you feel the stress.
3. Try affirmations for a stress free Christmas.
Instead of thinking about what you don’t have or haven’t done, switch your thinking. Clear your mind with the breathing exercise first. Next, write down the positive version of what you would like to happen and how you will be this Christmas. So, a stress free Christmas affirmation might go something like,
I AM happy to see my family this Christmas and enjoy their company I AM
I AM calm and in control and on top of my preparations I AM
You get the idea? You can say these out loud from a calm and positive place and by affirming the positive, you encourage the universe to deliver the positive.
4. Avoid the perfectionist trap for a stress free ChristmasWhy is it that we jog along nicely most of the year then try to become Martha Stewart and Oprah Winfrey rolled into one during the holiday season? We put such pressure on ourselves to have a chocolate box perfect time and it becomes a far from stress free Christmas for anyone. Stop beating yourself up because you made the family stuffing favorite instead of some cordon bleu extravaganza. Do you really need to fight other shoppers for the last bottle of truffle oil for the mashed potatoes, or compete for the perfect pie? Does it really matter to your niece that there are no bows on her Christmas wrapping- no- she is tearing off the paper so fast she didn’t even notice! The holiday season is for everyone and that includes you. Trying to create a perfect Christmas is by its very nature, doomed to failure. resolve instead to have a stress free Christmas where everyone has time to talk, to relax, to eat when they are ready and not live up to some movie expectations that are far removed from reality. Stop trying so hard to make Christmas perfect and appreciate “what is”. Appreciation is the magic key to happiness.
5. Take time for you for a stress free Christmas but do something nice for a stranger!
If you feel that the success of Christmas rests squarely on your shoulders then, stop that thinking and ask for help. Nobody will enjoy a stress free Christmas if you burn out under the weight of it all. Build in some you time over the next few days, to just remind yourself about what Christmas actually means to you. If the answer is- stress- then change your thinking and reduce your burden by sharing it with others. Then, step back and do something nice for a complete stranger. Yes, Christmas is traditionally about family, but there are many out there who are lonely and for whom Christmas is a terrible time of year. Helping others makes you feel better and also puts your own stresses into perspective.
I wish you a stress free Christmas and a wonderful 2016. For some great advice on overcoming stress listen to my radio show guest Tamara Dorris http://www.blogtalkradio.com/yourhappinessway/2015/12/18/overcome-stress-with-tamara-dorris.
If you need some help handling the holiday season, these posts may be useful
OR- email me and I will help however I can. Comment below if you have some advice on how to have a stress free Christmas.