I know that there are two types of people who love the holidays and can’t wait for Christmas and those that are overwhelmed and stressed out by this season. Now I love the holidays and am so excited about this time of year but I agree it’s a lot of work and effort and some years it can be very overwhelming. Which is why these steps to keeping a routine during the holidays are important.
I’m not the biggest fan of being on a strict routine. I like to play things lose usually but around this time of year as the to-do list gets longer and there are more commitments than usual there is more of a need for me and really everyone to have a more clear routine.
These steps to keeping a routine during the holidays may seem like common sense. Sometimes when you don’t think ahead about things you forget and then get into a bad situation. Like forgetting an important event, not making it to pick up someone on time or being so stressed out that you lose your temper.
That’s one I really want to try to do less. Losing my temper because I’m stressed!
3 Steps to keeping a routine during the holidays
Step 1: Schedule in a buffer time
With just a few weeks to Christmas, I am noticing that everywhere we go is busier. The grocery store, the gas station, the pet store, etc. Plus there is more traffic and more accidents. This means that things that normally take you a certain amount of time such as getting groceries, running to the bank, picking up your kids from school may take longer than you are used to.
So plan for this now because the closer we get to Christmas the crazier it’s going to get. Don’t give yourself not enough time to get things done and be where you need to be. Plan in some buffer time. So that if traffic is bad or the check out line is 5x longer than normal you don’t need to get upset.
Step 2: Don’t overschedule!!!
Along with setting buffer time in your schedule another way to be able to stay to your routine is to not overschedule! I know so many of you are guilty of this. It’s not good that you say yes to everything. Then don’t end up even enjoying your holiday because you are so busy!
It may be hard to believe but you really don’t need to do this. You deserve to enjoy the people and things you love at this time of year. You are allowed to say no to things. I’m not saying you shouldn’t help out or do things for others but just not at the expense of yourself.
Too often we think that without our help or us doing it that things won’t get done. Maybe they wouldn’t or they wouldn’t be done as well and that’s ok. I get it’s hard I hate saying no to people and disappointing anyone
Step 3: Give yourself 30 minutes in the morning to plan for the best day
Either aim to wake up a little earlier or find a way to give yourself 15 to 30 minutes each morning. To organize your day so that you know exactly what needs to be done and where you need to be. Doing this will help you to eliminate missing appointments or events that just slip your mind, Since you haven’t thought about them since you made them.
You could, of course, do this the night before but especially during this hectic season I find it more beneficial to do it in the morning. Take the time to go over your calendar and see what you have on your agenda today. Make a to-do list of the tasks you want to accomplish and discuss any plans or events with your family and go over what you expect from them.
Do you need your husband to go pick up something from the store on his way home from work? Let him know now so he can be aware of it. Do you have to go to a holiday party tonight? Make sure getting a gift wrapped and ready is on your to-do list so that you don’t think of it ten minutes before you are supposed to leave.
A big part of what throws us off our routines during this time of year is a failure to plan ahead. Doing this brief morning plan session will help to eliminate forgetting things or not having enough time. We can anticipate possible problems and solve them ahead of time.
My greatest hope is that by following these easy steps to keeping a routine during the holidays. That you will be able to enjoy them more. That some of the stress of this holiday season will be taken off your shoulders. So that you and your family can enjoy your holiday. Too often we think that being stressed out is just a normal experience.
That there is no way to not be overwhelmed during this time of the year but you don’t have to live that way. Take control of your life and your schedule. So that you can remember this Christmas as a fun time and not a time you were frazzled and annoyed.