The holiday season and stress go hand in hand.
Although many consider the holidays the “most wonderful time of the year,” it’s also a season that brings significant pressure—to find the perfect gift, carry out all of your favorite traditions, visit friends and family near and far. Ultimately, the holidays may be having you wishing for just one big gift: more time.
However, Santa likely won’t be putting that one under the tree—so now would be a good time to sharpen your time management skills!
Here are a few tips to get organized, on time and on the ball this season—without losing any of your holiday spirit:
Make a ‘budget’ for your time
We’re all used to budgeting out our finances to keep a handle on our spending—so why not take the same approach to how we dole out our time? Make a plan for the next few weeks with your standing time commitments, including working hours, to see how much free time you really have left over. From there, you can schedule in dedicated timeslots for things like holiday shopping, family get-togethers or volunteering for a charitable cause.
Get a little creative
Consider all the things you spend time on around the holidays, and then spend a little bit more time trying to think how you may do it all a little differently this year to give yourself back some of that precious time. For instance, instead of a lengthy stay at a relative’s house out of state, consider a long weekend or a meet-in-the-middle excursion. Or if you usually find yourself wasting hours strolling the local mall, unable to find the right gifts for your loved ones, move away from material items and more toward experiences: plan a trip together or get tickets to see a show. That way, you get to spend time doing something enjoyable without having to spend lots of time planning it.
Keep yourself as a priority
It can be very easy this time of year to feel pressured into saying “yes” to everything: attending holiday parties, signing up for the Pollyanna, even working overtime. This year, remember that it’s OK to say “no”! Actually, it can be one of the healthiest and most productive things you do this holiday season. By being comfortable setting boundaries, you can avoid overcommitting and reap the benefits of tending to your own health and wellbeing. That investment in yourself just might be the best gift you’ll get this season.
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