The hustle and bustle is mounting. And soon the onslaught of advertisements to brainwash us into believing that spending more and buying the biggest and best gifts in a frenzied state is what the holiday season is all about. High-stress levels, financial strain, and family discord are at a peak during this time. The holidays are sacred and should be a special time filled with warm feel-good memories.
So how do you cultivate a peaceful family atmosphere and ward off of the chaos that can tag along with the holiday season? By minding your family’s collective mindset. Make enjoying the holidays your family’s collective focus and intention. Shift the invitation to be overwhelmed by slowing down and taking the time to connect with the spiritual nature of this time of year that is often defined by your family’s religious beliefs. Remember that children tend to embrace the energy that we adults give off and follow our cues on what moral value to attach to the holiday season. Be a good model by following the below steps to reduce family stress and create lasting memories and holiday traditions.
Tips for Minding Your Family’s Mindset
● Make a family plan – Take the time to explore with your family those practices that feel good and align with your belief system. Have an honest discussion about what is important and the state of the family’s finances. Make a plan for giving and create a realistic budget that won’t interfere with your family’s integrity.
● Simplicity – It is ok to say no to the dizzying array of demands — parties, shopping, baking, cleaning, entertaining, and added pressure to be happy. Go for the meaningful by making handmade gifts, keeping with a spending limit, give to a charity, or volunteer your time.
● Start New Family Traditions – Reflect on the meaning of these holidays. Focusing on feelings of gratitude for all that is, in each moment. Create new traditions and ways of being that feed your family’s purpose and align with your values.
● Practice Patience – Our parking lots and roadways will become more congested, as well as longer lines with retailers, and delayed delivery times. Stay grounded, plan ahead, and allow flexibility for the unpredictabilities and high emotions that tend to occur this time of year.
● Give – Be compassionate and share of your time, skills, and/or resources with those in need and less fortunate. Think about those who are without family and support.
● Take Good Care of Yourself – It is important that we pay attention to our own needs and feelings during the holiday season. Learn to manage conflict and set healthy boundaries. We can also find fun, enjoyable and relaxing activities for ourselves and our families. By keeping our minds and bodies healthy, we are primed to deal with stressful situations when they arise.