We all know the holidays can sometimes be more stressful than joyful. Kid’s excitability can sometimes lead to parent’s anxiety. Here are four helpful tips from Kids In Crisis to help you manage holiday stress:
1. Re-do your To-do
When you make your holiday “to do” list, take a few minutes and ask yourself the following questions for each entry: (1) why am I doing it; (2) can it be delegated; (3) does it have to be done at all. For example, if the answer to one of those three questions is “because that is what we’ve always done”, you may want to consider a new and simpler tradition.
Yes, it might not get done exactly the way you would do it, but delegating serves two purposes. First, it saves you from doing everything. Second and more importantly, it enlists children as part of your “team.” Children will surprise you sometimes with how much they actually enjoy being part of the process.
3. Post Presents
If you find yourself bombarded with your children’s gift requests, keep in mind they see many more brand images per day than we did at their age; some estimate as many as 5,000 brand images per day! This can be very difficult for them to process on their own. One way to help them prioritize is to have them write each request on a stickie note, and post their notes on the wall. Asking them to post in order of preference will result in them having to choose where to place any new requests. You may be surprised at what falls to the bottom, or drops off the list altogether.
4. Teach Giving
Bring kids’ conversations about the “gimmes” back to the giving nature of the season. Encourage your children to choose their own kindness activities and offer to help complete them. Also, involve the kids in your giving activities. Whether it is baking cookies or placing money into the kettle, explain to your children why you choose to give the way you do, and how they can give too.