The holidays bring a mixture of delight and anxiety – stresses good and challenging. It is a time to reflect upon what we are grateful for and prioritize what is truly important in our lives. Stressors are necessary in our life but require identifying the necessary, enjoyable ones and the destructive, aggravating ones. It is within our control to create a time of joy instead of allowing and creating a time of increased tension and irritation.
Important points to keep in mind during this holiday season:
- The amount spent on gifts is not important, thinking of another person is important.
- Handmade gifts are more memorable than store bought ones.
- Simple things are often more appreciated than elaborate, time consuming, expensive items.
- Keep in mind what is essential and what is optional.
- Ask yourself, “if I do this, what will happen?” “If I don’t do this, what will happen?” “What is the purpose and meaning of what I am about to do?”
- Remember people, not things are important.
- Identify what is stressful for you and work around those situations
- If crowds are stressful, avoid them.
- Visit or shop in less crowded situations (on-line or catalogue shopping or during off-peak times.)
- Visit for short periods of time with the people you feel comfortable with.
- Don’t spend money you cannot afford to spend
- If you can’t afford to send cards, call to tell people you are thinking of them.
- Send an electronic card on the Internet
Enjoy yourself and enjoy those who are important to you. Maintain control of your personal situation. You are the person who can identify what stresses you, therefore you are the person who needs to make a plan to control those situations so you can enjoy your family and friends.
Holidays can be a joy and a challenge. Take control to make it a joyful holiday season.
Linda Whitten Stalters
SARDAA, Chair, Board of Directors