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Once November 1st hits, I always feel like the holidays flood in like a rushing tidal wave of red and green. My natural tendency is to go into overload planning mode but this year I am forcing myself to slow down. Whenever I go into overload planning mode, I end up missing all of the little moments throughout the season. I become obsessed with planning out crafts for the kids and finding the bows for the tree, that I miss my little one staring at the tree in amazement.
Do you struggle making sure that you slow down during the holidays? If so, here are 5 practical tips to help you slow down and savor the season.
(1) Make a list. Take some time to sit down and write all the things that are “must dos” this holiday season. Involve your family if they are able to participate. What are you planning to commit to this season?
(2) Check the list twice. If you are anything like me, you may have overextended yourself already in your list. Be realistic as you look at your list. In the past I have seen how I had a great idea, but it needed to be tweaked to become more practical for my season of life. Once you have your list ready, post it somewhere you can reference it. If any of the items are date specific, go ahead and write those on the calendar!
3) Let go of perfection. With the holidays come a lot of expectations. We naturally begin to envision the perfect tree, Christmas cookies, and presents. Then when things start to crumble a little, we become frustrated and angered. It is a vicious cycle the striving for perfection. So let’s choose to let go of perfection this holiday season- embrace the imperfections.
4) Remind yourself that saying “no” is good for your family. Repeat with me, “I do not need to attend every holiday function I am invited to.” When the invites start rolling in, it can be easy to get overwhelmed and feel like your calendar has no room to breathe. Remember your list from steps 1 and 2? Consult with that and then make a decision. Sometimes we need to say no, so we can say yes to more time with our loved ones.
5) Focus on the true meaning of Christmas. Christmas is not about the perfect dinner or decorated house. It is not about your children in matching outfits. It is about the birth of Jesus and celebrating HIM. When we slow down, we are able to reflect on this and share the beautiful truth and hope with others.
Are you ready to slow down with me this holiday season? What tips do you have for slowing down when the world is telling you to do more, be more, and hurry?