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3 Ways to De-Stress This Holiday Season

Dec 12, 2017 Personal
woman looking stressed during the holidays

It’s the most wonderful time of the year — but for people trying to balance work, home, and a slew of holiday commitments, the holiday season may not be so jolly. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a deep breath, grab an eggnog, and follow these steps for de-stressing your holidays.

De-Stress Mentally During the Holidays

  1. Make a list and check it twice.
    To-do lists are an amazingly simple and straightforward way to stay on task and make sure nothing gets missed. Review your list every morning and evening, and be sure to cross off the tasks you accomplish — you’ll see that things are getting done, even if you’re too busy to feel it.
  2. Use your vacation time.
    This is what it’s for! Plan a lunch date with friends, set aside a day to get your last-minute shopping done, or reward yourself with a day for just relaxing. You’ll enjoy the season more if you know you’ve got a full day coming to get personal holiday tasks completed.
  3. Give yourself a break.
    It’s just not possible to accept every invite, handmake gifts for everyone on your list, and keep your home and work organized. Remember, everyone else is wrapped up in the holiday chaos too, and this is a time of forgiveness and understanding. The first person to offer understanding to is yourself!

If you’re looking to take it a step further, you can alleviate more pressure on yourself with a few financial steps for you to feel at ease that you’re not going overboard during the holidays.

How to Avoid Financial Stress During the Holidays

  1. Create a budget.
    Set a realistic budget for holiday spending, covering gifts, decorations, and any festivities. Having a clear spending plan helps prevent overspending and allows you to enjoy the season without worrying about the financial strain.
  2. Utilize savings or bonus.
    If you’ve been saving for a specific goal or receive a holiday bonus, consider using this fund to cover your holiday expenses. This way, you avoid relying on credit cards and accumulating debt.
  3. Track your expenses.
    Keep a record of your holiday spending. This helps you stay within your budget and identify areas where you can cut back if needed. Various budgeting apps can assist in tracking expenditures effortlessly. BankSouth’s Money Management tool in online banking makes this easy!
  4. Look for deals.
    Take advantage of holiday bargains. Times like Black Friday, Cyber Week, and 1-2 weeks from Christmas are prime times to find the best deals for holiday gifts and essentials for hosting friends and family.
  5. Communicate, communicate, communicate.
    If finances are tight, be open with your friends and family. Suggest alternatives, such as a Secret Santa gift exchange or potluck dinner, to share in the holiday expenses.
  6. Plan for next year.
    After the holidays pass, take a few moments to review your spending and consider starting a Christmas savings fund or 12-month CD for next year. This proactive approach can help you avoid unnecessary stress in the future.

Don’t forget that the holidays should be about creating memories and cherishing precious time with our loved ones. By taking proactive measures for your mental and financial health, you can enjoy the festivities without the burden of excessive stress. Happy holidays!

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