While the holiday season is one of the most exciting times of the year, it often comes hand-in-hand with enormous amounts of stress. Here are 10 tips to stay organized and sane until after New Year’s:
1. Only shop during off hours. Aim for opening time, or late evenings to avoid large crowds.
2. Prioritize and schedule the different tasks on your list.
3. Try organizing a cookie exchange. Instead of baking several different kinds yourself, make a plan with a couple of friends and then get together to swap. You’ll all leave with a large assortment of cookies your family and loved ones can enjoy.
4. Don’t address long-standing family conflicts during this overwhelming period.
5. Call a babysitter far in advance!
6. Always underestimate how much you can accomplish in a day, and overestimate how long each activity will take. Everything will get done, with a lot less pressure.
7. Try starting a new tradition. Maybe Dad and the kids should make breakfast on Christmas morning?
8. On occasion, treat yourself between errands. Consider taking half an hour of your day for a manicure or pedicure, haircut or afternoon coffee with a friend.
9. Look for out-of-the-way cashiers to avoid waiting in long lines.
10. Buy group presents whenever possible. For example, don’t buy each child a gift- invest in something everyone will enjoy, like a board game or a ping-pong table. Similarly, organize a girl’s night out instead of exchanging gifts with friends.