It’s that time of the year again. Come Yule, and you’ll be in a tizzy, harried already with requests that are more like orders from Sergeant I-Want-it-All, like, “Dad, I want my favorite… all my friends have it!” Chances are, the much-feared Christmas stress has already taken root, and is feeding upon your vulnerability. No matter how much you love Christmas, stress and anxiety are the other side of this season of cheer.
Is there a way out?
Yes there is. Dads can beat Christmas stress. All it takes is a little planning, and being proactive. Here are a few simple tips to help you keep unwanted anxiety at bay during Christmas:
- Lists: A good old Christmas shopping list is a surefire way to keep a tab on what is necessary and what is unwanted expense.
- One-stop-shopping: Try to buy all Christmas gifts and presents on a single day, or group your shopping needs according to categories (for example, Toys for Kids, Gifts for Grandparents, Gift for Wifey Dear, Gifts for Near and Dear Ones, Gifts for Not-so-near-and-not-so-Dear Ones, etc.). This way you will cover most items without having to hop from store to store.
- Time yourself: Allot the time you are likely to spend at a store. This will help you organize your shopping itinerary.
- No Coffee Please: Avoid caffeine while shopping. It is a little hard to imagine, but do try this one. Caffeine levels add to stress inducing substances within your body, which could only worsen your anxiety levels.
- Relax: Try simple breathing exercises when waiting—in a line or at a restaurant. Deep breathing helps lower stress related hormones and lets you ease tension.
These are simple things that one often ignores in a hurry. So, go out there, have all the fun this Christmas, and banish stress as just a memory.
I love the shopping stress – that may be it’s not really stress for me it’s only a welcome pressure.