Reducing holiday stress

Published December 11, 2015

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As we approach the holiday season, it is important to remember that, while holidays are exciting and fun for children, they often produce extra stress for children and adults alike. Children’s routines are often disrupted through holiday events and celebrations. Keep expectations realistic and provide structure to the holiday to help children remain jolly through the season!

Below are some tips to aid in a stress free holiday season:

Reducing stress for children:

* Have predictable routines, including bedtimes and mealtimes

* Bring things to do when you know children will need to wait

* Include children in planning when possible

* Travel with favorite stuffed animals or blankets to remind them of home

Reducing stress for adults:

* Establish a budget and stick to it. Children enjoy your time more than they enjoy toys!

* Keep it simple. Spend time enjoying old family traditions and establishing new ones!

* Get organized! Make a list to help you remember last minute details.

* Say “no”. Don’t feel the need to attend gatherings and events that aren’t important to you.

Lastly, take time to enjoy your family throughout the season. Here are some fun memory-making ideas to make the season bright:

* Bake cookies

* Go for a “winter walk”

* Volunteer your time

* Clean out old toys for donation

* Sing favorite holiday songs

* Collect coats for the homeless

* Make handmade gifts and crafts

* Make individual or family ornaments each year

* Start a list of things you are thankful for– everyone in the family add a new one each day!