How to deal with holiday stress
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How to deal with holiday stress

christmas stress statistics
Photo by loly galina on Unsplash

Everyone has had the experience of the holidays becoming stressful in some way. From finding the perfect gifts to dealing with a troublesome cousin over Christmas dinner. Here are some top tips from awesome bloggers on how to deal with Christmas stress this year.

1. Say no.

Saying no to all the little things that eat up your time and mental energy allows you to make time for the activities that make you feel refreshed.

just say no etching on tree
Photo by Andy T on Unsplash

2. Be flexible.

We all know that no matter how well we plan ahead, get enough sleep, or keep our calendars clear, there will always be something that doesn’t go as planned.  And that’s okay.

Mary Leigh

3. Prioritize.

…a to-do list actually does help me to get things done more efficiently. I’m also less likely to forget something that I’ve written down. However, if your to-do list is constantly growing or you never cross everything off, then it might be time to evaluate what’s on it.


4. Lower your expectations.

Over-hype and high expectations make preparing for Christmas festivities much more stressful. If you worry yourself over having the best decorations, the most presents, or the most memorable dinner party, you could end up trying too hard (and going a little crazy). 

person using laptop computer holding card
Photo by Andy T on Unsplash

5. Shop online.

I really like going to the mall, wandering aimlessly from store to store, smelling every candle and lotion that has a tester. It’s a fun way to spend a lazy afternoon, but it’s not the best use of your time. Especially this time of year. The mall is crowded, checkout lines are long, and it just takes a lot longer than you anticipate.

Drugstore Divas
gratitude journal to help with stress
Photo by Ana Juma on Unsplash

In a 2019 survey of over 1000 U.S. respondents, 58% of respondents said they prefer to do their shopping online as it was less stressful.

6. Start a gratitude journal.

While you can’t always change your reality, you can change how you react. Manifesting an attitude of gratitude this holiday season is a great way to begin!

christmas shopping stress in central london
Photo by James Healy on Unsplash

7. Finish off all your Christmas shopping before Thanksgiving.

Having this extra time also helped me find ‘the right’ gifts and find the best prices! Yup, this saves me time, stress, and money. Can’t beat that!


Stressed out about what to get for your extended family for the Christmas season? CLICK HERE for a gift guide to help you get something for your in-laws! You’ll find something useful and/or interesting regardless of your budget!

breathe neon text on shrubs how to deal with christmas stress
Photo by Tim Goedhart on Unsplash

8. Enjoy your own company.

Maybe this has a greater impact if you’re an introvert, but my guess is that everyone can benefit from just a little time alone to think (or not think), or do exactly what you want without interruption. It doesn’t matter how you spend the time: browse a bookstore, pick up an old (or new) hobby, or just sit on a lounge chair in the backyard and feel the sun on your face.

nora dealing with holiday stress

9. Delegate.

Maybe your husband doesn’t fold clothes exactly the way you like them, but he is capable of folding. So let him do it! Once you get over the worry of passing off tasks, you’ll see what a relief it is to have some help


In the same 2019 survey mentioned above, 12 percent described the festive season as pure stress. 8 percent agreed that there are always family fights over the holidays.

10. Simplify your Christmas decorating.

I simply didn’t have enough room to put up all the decorations in my house. Not enough shelf space to put things on, not enough corners to fill, not enough walls to hang things on… Once I decided on my end goal – peace and simplicity at Christmastime – the rest was easy. It was also very fun giving decorations away to extended family and friends who were quite excited to receive them. It provided blessings on both sides.

how to deal with christmas stress
Photo by Arun Kuchibhotla on Unsplash

11. Be honest and genuine about what you can (or can’t afford).

If you’re in a place where you simply can’t buy lots of gifts for tons of people (we’ve mostly all been there at some point, right?) then don’t hesitate to set that expectation. You are not obligated by anyone to gift anything. Don’t let guilt cause you to spend money you don’t have. Free yourself from that. 

imperfect messy room
Photo by Onur Bahçıvancılar on Unsplash

12. Accept imperfection.

We’re constantly bombarded with images of the “perfect” Christmas — on television, magazines, commercials, and social media. It. Doesn’t. Exist.


Stressed out about dealing with a difficult relationship during the holidays? CLICK HERE for 4 tips on how to improve your relationships with your extended family.

13. Pick your battles.

We all have someone in our circle that rubs us up the wrong way.  It’s only natural, not everyone can always get along.  Allowing someone else to get under your skin, though, is only going to ruin your Christmas and increase your stress levels. Learn to pick your battles, and don’t take the bait if relatives want to argue or things go wrong. 

Attachment Mummy
Rachel Holiday stress kin unplugged

Personally, I plan to let a lot of things roll off my back these holidays. A lot of picking of battles. In a way that has never been me. So this will be a surprise to some people around me and if I manage to pull it off the whole time, it will be a surprise to me too!

How have you dealt with the stress of the holidays over the years?

Kin Unplugged

I aim to provide millennial women with a space where they can find helpful information to make their everyday lives easier while they start and grow their families.

This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. Great advice for how to deal with holiday and Christmas stress. I love this time of year, but it can be super stressful, especially since Thanksgiving fell a little late this year. Your advice is super practical and I totally lowered my expectations and shopped online this year. I will have to keep in mind your other advise as well. Thanks for the great post.

    1. Kin Unplugged

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Jacquie

    Saying no can be difficult but it is a necessity for your mental health.

    1. Kin Unplugged

      Very much so

  3. SimmyH.

    I really LOVE all of your tips. Especially the one about enjoying your own company. I think what I’ll do is plan 1 day out of the month taking myself out on a date. And OMG I have got to learn how to say no, I try to help so many people and eventually burn out. It was easier to say yes to everything before I brought a little human into this world.

    1. Kin Unplugged

      lol yes. It’s realising how little time you seem to have available in the day now and knowing you need to prioritise more.

  4. Paris

    Great advice! I will say shopping online has been my saving grace this year! And I told myself to be okay with saying “no”. I am naturally one to want everyone happy; but what about me! So that has helped me as well lately. I need time for me and be okay with it! Thank you for sharing!

    1. Kin Unplugged

      I’m just about to settle down after putting baby to bed and do some online shopping too! I agree on your other point too – and I’m reminding myself all the time now that you can’t make everyone happy all the time.
      Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Hi Kin,

    Really awesome tips! The holidays can be very stressful and sometimes we just need to remind ourselves to calm down and take everything in bites size. Say “no’ is probably the hardest thing to do for mothers! We want to ensure everyone is happy especially our babies!

    Thank you for sharing!


    Kayla | Mommy Blogger | My Motherhood Made Easy

  6. Fatima Torres

    You always want to be honest with what your budget is. More so during the holiday season. Never overspend. You’ll feel it in the end.

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