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Holiday Stress

I could say something cliché, like; “You’ve got to love the Holidays!” But, I’m not sure everyone does. Yes, the Holidays involve a little time off from work, indulging in some adult beverages, gifts and seeing friends and family. Maybe you have a reasonable snowfall too for a pristine winter wonderland to go along with the spirit of the holiday you celebrate. Perhaps twinkling lights make you smile a little.

Or, all you can think about are piled up emails waiting for you when you return to work, how crazy the airports will be and awkward encounters with family. It’s not just the cost of gifts, it’s also finding something suitable that can get so very stressful. The costs don’t help either. Snow might just mean waking up really early to shovel the driveway, getting out a dirty bag of rock salt and scraping windshields. Perhaps the booze is the only thing that makes you smile a little.

I hope that’s not the case. I hope the Holidays are for you what they are supposed to be. A time of love, laughter and good will. But, I am not a fool. When we are young, the Holidays are full of mystery and toys. As adults, we have to heave the responsibility of perpetuating that mystery and all the work of organizing the parties onto our shoulders. We all have so much to do already that it just becomes one more thing to add to the pile.

Buying gifts for the holidays can be one of the most stressful things people experience all year long.

By the way, I am not being some negative Tiffany here. I still love the Holidays. I am getting this universal sentiment from everyone else. According to OnePoll, over half of the 2,000 people they polled this year told them that they have a set budget for the Holidays, but only a fifth of them are sticking to the budget. The other half just doesn’t see a point in having a budget since they know they aren’t going to stick to it anyways. So, about 800 of the people that set a budget overspend during the Holidays by about $500. Whoa!

Money is the one thing that I think stresses everyone out, even the wealthiest people. Heck, they might be the most stressed, for whatever reason. Between gifts, food and drinks, the bill can get a little pricey during this magical time of year. What if you have guests staying at your home? Then you stress about cleaning and everyone being comfortable. You either need to make dinner for everyone or hire a caterer. It’s all expensive.

Listen, I get it but I don’t have to like it. You already know how I go about dealing with stress. I also like yoga and breathing exercises. Here are some other ideas for dealing with holiday stress.

  • Don’t go crazy on trying to convince everyone you are Julia Childs
  • Get to the airport way ahead of time and make sure you have a good book loaded
  • Instead of dreading running into family, get in the mindset to be happy to see them
  • Think of shoveling snow as a workout that is hitting some muscles you never get to in the gym
  • Make sure you buy gifts online so you don’t have to deal with store mayheim

Yep, it’s all easier said than done. I know that is what you are thinking about my tips to overcome holiday stress. A string of lights goes out, your aunt needs you to go to the store for her, and your kids run around the airport not letting you read anything. The booze you looked forward to makes you feel crummy the next morning and the guilt-trip from your mom makes you vow never to come for the Holidays ever again. National Lampoon’s summarized it all very well. “Where’s the Tylenol?”

On New Year’s Day it will be 2020. 2020! That’s crazy to think about. I have never tried to stand in Times Square and probably never will. Although, I have been to many cities for New Year’s Eve. I have taken public transportation on New Year’s Eve and frozen my behind off. I’ve celebrated on New Year’s Eve so many times that it gets a little more difficult to build up the enthusiasm for it each year. It’s a lot of work. I can watch fireworks on my ultra HD TV now with my crazy sound system. And, as it all turns out, 2020 will have 12 months to it and the same national holidays. Birthdays will fall on the same days as last year too.

Did you know that next year NASA is asking for the funds to put people back on the moon again for the first time since 1972? They want to be on the moon by 2024 and then they want to keep people on the moon starting in 2028. Did you know that a high-speed train will connect Beijing, China to London, England in 2020? Did you know that the U.S. Navy plans on getting 50% of its fuel from biofuels next year? I like that. All-natural is what I like the most. As much as it all seems repetitive to a point of complete exasperation, it’s not. It all depends on your perspective at any given moment whether everything seems different or the same.

2020 won’t be like 2019. It won’t be like 2018, 2008, 2000 or 1969. The Holidays are a great time to celebrate that year. Do you think the year my first daughter was born seemed like just another year? If you didn’t have family that drove you nuts, then what would you have? Whether we want to say it or not, we all look forward to the Holidays all year long. We plan for it. I look forward to yelling at the person that sings a carol in July. We all ask our accountants if we can write off our flight from last year as a business expense. We can’t and we know it. Don’t let the Holidays stress you out. Just go with it and try and fun.

And hey, if Sugar and Kush can help out at all, then all the better.


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