Christmas is often referred to as a time of joy and thanksgiving.
And it absolutely is.
Although, Christmas can also be a stressful time for many.
Whether you go to one or several places on a Christmas Day, it is important to acknowledge the stress it may bring and how to deal with it.
It is also important to be grateful for what you have and focus on the present.
In the year 2020, Christmas is going to be different for everybody.
However, if we all focus on what we can control, the festive season can still be a joyful one.
A Special Time
Christmas is a special time for many and so it should be!
It’s a time to celebrate, a time to be grateful and a time to (hopefully) relax.
Christmas is also an incredible opportunity to spend time with the people that mean the most to us, where possible.
There is nothing quite like the Christmas spirit.
A Stressful Time?
To me, Christmas is one of my favourite times of the year, however, it can also be a stressful time.
Not being with both parents on Christmas Day simultaneously can be tough. The difficulty of not being able to be with loved ones should never be discounted.
In the past, on Christmas Day alone, my brother and I would visit six different places.
At times, it felt as though we were spending more time in the car then focusing on the present.
I understand that Christmas can be stressful for various reasons.
Some find Christmas stressful simply because they have to buy a heap of presents or prepare a heap of food. Others find it stressful because they are more concerned about a loved one being lonely.
All reasons are equally valid.
Whatever stresses you may experience on Christmas Day, there is no greater advice to give other than to be present.
Wherever you are, no matter the duration of time you are there, be present.
What Do You Mean By ‘Be Present?’
It means focus on the NOW. What you can control, what is in front of you.
For example, when you speak to someone on Christmas, listen to what they are saying, be active in the conversation.
As much as possible, disregard the stress of arriving at your next destination or whatever worry you might have.
Being present can make a hell of a difference when reflecting on the day you just had.
There is nothing more disappointing then looking back and feeling like the day flew by because you did not allow yourself to take it all in.
Where possible, routine can be super valuable.
For example, each year I wake up at mum’s on Christmas morning and fall asleep at dad’s on Christmas night. This has been our routine ever since I can remember.
Having a set routine, whatever It may look like for you, can help create stability around the Christmas period.
Knowing what the general gist of where you are going, who you are seeing, and the order of your Christmas day can certainly ease some of the stress.
Parents- this is something you can really help with!
Whatever your circumstances, you can always turn to gratitude.
Whatever you have to be grateful for, it is important to acknowledge, especially around the festive season.
It can be very easy to fall into a slump and focus on the stresses and negatives. However, these stresses are usually concerning things that are out of our control.
Rather, try telling your loved ones that you are grateful for them. Say thanks to those who care and love you. Celebrate all that you have achieved in this year and what you hope for the next.
You Are Not Alone
Christmas time is not always easy, but you’ve got it.
Attempt to give yourself the best opportunity to enjoy the special time of the year. Focus on what you can control, be present and have gratitude for what you have.
Although not being in your shoes, I aim to understand and honour your unique position in this world. Please feel free to contact me by submitting a contact form here or emailing at firstname.lastname@example.org.