For most, Christmas is the most wonderful time of year. However, for some, especially parents, it can be very overwhelming.
For most, Christmas is the most wonderful time of year. However, for some, especially parents, it can be very overwhelming. So much to do with so little time, limited funds and of course the pressure of having the perfect Christmas.
It is completely normal to feel stressed. emotional or even overwhelmed at Christmas time, in fact, it happens the best of us at times. If you are finding yourself overwhelmed as we approach Christmas here are our top tips to help curb the emotions and what to do if things are getting too much.
Make a List and check it twice. Sit down with a cuppa when the kids are in bed and write a list of everything you need down to the mince pies and batteries. Include Christmas work parties, school concerts and any meet-ups you may have organised. This way you have everything you need or need to do in one place and won't risk forgetting about them seems you are not feeling your best.
Focus on what's important. If there is too much on your to-do list knock off what you won't miss. For example, this year I didn't send Christmas cards and it feels great. I freed up a whole evening and saved myself a fortune on stamps too. See what you can ditch to free up some time and save a few quid while you are at it.
Struggling with money and feel like you won't be able to fulfil your kids Christmas wish list or worrying about how you are going to put food on the table? Get in touch with your local St. Vincent De Paul, these guys are here to help you in times of need. They won't judge you, in fact, they will pop Christmas dinner on your table in the makings of a hamper and pat you on the back for being strong enough to ask for help. Remember you can always give back in a few months or even a year when you find your feet again.
If you need to hit the shops plan to go as early in the day as possible. It's quieter, there's no pushing and shoving and chances are you'll nab all the best bargains too. However, remember to shop around, look online and compare prices. You would be surprised by the difference in prices in some shops this Christmas.
Cooking dinner for everyone and beginning to feel like it is all too much? Do what I do because I can promise you it helps. Ask one relative to peel all the vegetables the evening before, get another to make the dessert and on the day accept help around the kitchen. Yes, it might get a little busy at times but at least you are not exhausted when it comes to carving the turkey or ham or whatever meats you choose to eat on Christmas day.
Make some time for you.The darker evenings are not helping anyone at the moment so maybe go for a brisk walk before dusk falls. If the weather is too miserable grab yourself a book in the library or download a funny podcast or two then dip into the tin of roses and enjoy some me-time. Throw in an early night or two if at all possible.
Learn to say no. Invitations pop in the door left, right and centre over the Christmas but sometimes you have got to learn to say no. While Christmas is about family don't forget about the ones you actually live with. Do they want to be carted around by car to Aunt Nellie's house that they have seen since they were christened, probably not? Choose wisely and make sure you get a few evenings where you can just kick back relax and enjoy the Christmas movies on TV with a beer or a glass of wine (or in my case, a cuppa).
And to finish it off make sure you make fewer sprouts, more roasties and an extra jug of gravy because let's be honest, that were most of the arguments start on Christmas Day.
Merry Christmas and have a good one!
Kellie Kearney is a Dublin mammy of kids aged 2, 3, 4 and 8. A self-confessed procrastinator and picker-upper of things, Kellie's love include coffee, doughnuts, travel and sharing every day true to life moments on Instagram of her expanding family. Follow her on Instagram.