Some people prefer to wait until the last minute to tackle items on their Christmas to-do list, but I’m not one of them. Instead, I like to think ahead when the holidays approach to find ways to maximize my time and minimize my stress.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of The J.M. Smucker Company. The opinion and text are all mine.
With so much going on and so many things to plan and organize before the end of the year, life can get a little hectic, so I do what I can to make things easier for myself and ultimately take care of my mental health during the jolliest – and busiest – times of the year.
If you’re on a mission to reduce your stress levels this holiday season, here are a few smart tips to consider as you make your plans:
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ONLINE SHOPPING!
For many people, combating the crowds at local stores is one of the most stress-inducing parts of the holiday season. You’re stuck driving from one shop to the next, navigating crowded parking lots and roaming the aisles to see if the gift you’re looking for is even in stock. And if it is? Odds are, they’re running low on cashiers, so you’re stuck waiting in line.
So, I recommend seeing how much of your holiday shopping list you can take care of online. Odds are, nearly everything on your list of presents to buy can be purchased over the Internet. If you’re on a mission to shop small businesses, look to independent shops and websites like Etsy that allow crafters and creators to set up a virtual storefront for a small fee. And if not? You can find virtually anything you’d like to gift someone on Amazon, and you can even pay a small upcharge to have your item gift-wrapped and shipped directly to your family and friends.
SAY “NO” WHEN YOU NEED TO.
As Christmas draws closer, you’ll probably see more and more invitations pop up in your inbox. From festive concerts and plays to office potlucks and upscale soirees to celebrate the close of the year, finding time for so many activities on top of your usual holiday to-do list can seem a little overwhelming.
Reduce your stress this Christmas season by saying “no” more often. You might feel guilty, but you shouldn’t. There’s nothing wrong with politely declining an invitation that your schedule simply doesn’t have room for – especially if that invite arrives when the holiday season is already in full swing.
STOCK UP ON THE THINGS YOU’LL NEED TO FIX EASY-TO-MAKE MEALS FOR YOUR FAMILY.
When the kids are out of school for the holidays, and you’re running from one shop to the next, trying to find time for all the action items on your to-do list, cooking a big, elaborate lunch might not jot be on your to-do list. Instead, stock your pantry with all the essentials for your favorite quick fixes.
In my house, delicious peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are the treat of choice when we’re looking for fast, filling, and easy meals. Even when things are as busy as they can be, we find a few minutes to pull out the Jif peanut butter and Smucker’s strawberry jam and make a few classic PB&J sandwiches. We sit down around the kitchen table, and reconnect with one another and enjoy the fresh-roasted peanut taste of Jif and a touch of sweetness from Smucker’s. It’s our delicious way of taking a moment to ourselves and spread a little love to one another this holiday season before rushing off to whatever’s next on our agenda. With minimal prep time and virtually zero mess to clean up aside from a couple of knives, I get to spend my time enjoying my family’s company – not cooking a long and complicated lunch.
Keep these tips in mind as Christmas approaches, and you’ll treat yourself and your family to a stress-free holiday season!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Jif. The opinions and text are all mine.