Christmas is portrayed as a happy holiday, but the reality for many is just the opposite. Instead of joy, there are stress, debt, and guilt. Unfortunately, for most families Christmas is the most stressful period of the year. Endless interactions with friends and relatives, last-minute shopping, great expenditures, and the pressure of holiday preparations undermine the delight and fabulous atmosphere of the holiday. If this sounds like your usual holiday season, you can take steps to ensure that this Christmas will be the happiest.
1. Start today
If the stress of last-minute shopping is what keeps you from being happy during the holidays, starting making purchases right now may work better. Try to do your shopping throughout the year so that you don’t have to brave the stores when the crowds are awful. If you plan it right, you won’t even have to brave Christmas traffic. Apart from shopping, your to-do list should also include gifts, food, decoration ideas and expenses and even a seating plan. When making a guest list keep their e-mail addresses and phone numbers handy so that you can easier contact them before Christmas Eve.