What is your favorite part of the holidays? Is it the togetherness? The gift-giving? The delicious food?
I love the joy. The wonder in my children’s eyes as they stare out of the window and watch snowflakes dance in the sky. The smiles on their faces as they slurp up hot cocoa with marshmallows.
The holidays are, in general, a time where we reflect on the things that make us the happiest. So, how do you stay joyful, even in the chaos of the holidays?
7 ways to stay joyful this year
Keep a routine
Especially when you work from home, it is important to try to maintain some kind of a routine. Lack of a routine is a breeding ground for chaos. Make sure that you set your alarm and get in some work each day. (Except for on the holiday itself, of course!)
Looking to simplify your home office set-up? Invest in a standing desk riser! This will improve your posture, and help your neck and eyes not get so strained.
One way to boost your mood during the holidays is to give back to others. There is really something to it. The feeling of making other people happy makes us happier in return.
Most towns have a local soup kitchen or food bank. The winter months are especially hard for the homeless and those without sufficient resources for food. I’m sure these organizations would appreciate any help they can get!
Keep gifts age appropriate
This is a great way to minimize “gift frustration” and keep the holidays as stress free as possible. While the holidays are technically not just about the gifts, small children do not always understand that. Getting a toddler a toy with a ton of small pieces and complicated rules is hard on the child— and the parent who has to supervise!
Limit use of electronics
We can be guilty in our household of too much screen time. That is true for lots of families. But studies are showing that too much screen time in young children can lead to issues with focus and behavior, as well as increased amounts of anxiety.
Is your child having too many meltdowns? Maybe they are overstimulated. Give their brain a break, and set limits on TV watching and video game playing
Spend time together
This is something in particular that really brought me joy this Christmas. I got a lot of snuggle time with my kids, and my spouse who works from home had a lighter work load and was able to take frequent “fun breaks.”
Take the time to cuddle and read books. Play board games. Make popcorn and watch cartoons (a favorite here!). Do a puzzle simple enough for the kids to help.
Togetherness is really what the holidays are all about!
Keep your family safe
This time of year it is especially important to keep your family healthy, warm if you live where it gets cold like I do, and safe from toxic family members. Illness and negativity run rampant, and we need to protect our kids from that to the extent we can.
We also need to make sure that our work environment is safe and we are not causing unnecessary strain on our bodies and eyes. Desk risers are an amazing tool for all employees— whether you work remote or at the office.
Foster a sense of calm
It is very easy to get overstimulated and overwhelmed around the holidays. When we get into that state of mind, our kids pick up on it, and they start acting up and not listening.
Make it your intention each day to take life one step at a day, and not let life’s little frustrations get you down.
Have a happy New Year, and New Decade
With a new decade upon us, make it a priority to enter it with a clear mind and a happy heart. Your mindset at the start of the year and decade will set the tone for the rest of it.
It’s not always easy but it can be done, if you follow these steps.