According to Andy Williams, it’s the most wonderful time of the year, but with all its joy and celebration, Christmas can also bring feelings of anxiety as you struggle to cope with all the obligations, financial pressure and a long list of additional tasks.
Without being mindful of your wellbeing, you might find yourself being swept along by the festivity planning and before you know it, you’re struggling with Christmas anxiety. And yes, it’s a thing.
Why Do People Get Christmas Anxiety?
It’s supposed to be a joyful, happy time and for the most part it is. But for those who are prone to anxiety, the stress of Christmas can become overwhelming, and here’s why:
- Obligation: Family commitments can cause a whole load of stress, especially when you and your partner/children want to do one thing and your parents/friends expect you to do another.
- Business: Keeping healthy work/life harmony can be challenging, especially if your workload increases in November/December. You may worry about keeping up with orders, finding new clients, or organising cover over the festive period.
- Financial stress: If you aren’t careful with planning and budgeting, the cost of Christmas can soon add up, as you bow down to (yet more) obligation and consumerism.
- Overwhelm: At a time when you want to whittle down your task list, it seems to just get longer and longer as you write down all the things you ‘should’ be doing.
Can you relate to any of the above? If so, read on for some tips on how you can begin to reduce stress and Christmas anxiety…
Reducing Christmas Anxiety…in Your Business
- Plan ahead: Start batch creating content in October/November and schedule ahead of time to cover your blogs and social media posts in December
- Busy at work? If Christmas is a busy time, consider outsourcing work to a Virtual Assistant. Get recommendations in Facebook groups, or use platforms such as Fiverr or People per Hour.
- Quiet at work? If December tends to be one of your quieter months, utilise the time to create courses, write blogs, re-purpose existing content, or catch up with all those courses you bought…but never finished.
- Feeling stressed? Try Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT Tapping) as a gentle was to reduce cortisol and calm your fight or flight reaction
- Connect with others. Christmas can be a lonely time for solopreneurs. Maybe you could arrange a virtual Christmas party on Facebook, or book into some local networking events?
Reducing Christmas Anxiety…at Home
- Get used to saying ‘No’. When you answer the questions below, you’ll realise how you’d like your Christmas to look. Now is not the time to be a people pleaser. It’s time to please yourself and the people who are most important to you.
- Set a budget: Whether you are wealthy or not, setting a budget is sensible to stop yourself from overspending, plus who needs loads more ‘stuff’?. Do your utmost not to get swept along by the commercialism and materialism. Plus, it’s better for the environment.
- Make time for yourself: Christmas can be really busy and it’s easy to neglect self-care. Make ‘me time’ a non-negotiable part of your daily routine and you’ll build more festive resilience.
- Be mindful of your drinking. It’s all to easy to use alcohol as a way to reduce stress over Christmas, but there’s no doubt about it, alcohol increases anxiety. Moderate your drinking so you’re better able to cope with any festive pressures.
It’s vital that you put your mental health at the top of your agenda in your business and your personal life; there’s no point running yourself ragged trying to be all things to all people and neglecting your own enjoyment and happiness in the meantime. There’s nothing worse than burnout at Christmas!
What about the ‘True’ meaning of Christmas?
What helps me a lot at this time of the year is to think about what this time of year means to me on a deeper, spiritual level.
Answer these questions to discover what Christmas means to you:
- What is the true meaning of Christmas to you?
- Who makes this time of year special?
- What ways would you like to ‘give back’ at Christmas i.e. volunteering, creating Christmas boxes for local children’s charities, reverse advent calendar etc.
- What do you do to make Christmas memorable?
- Can you recall a favourite Christmas – why was it so special and what happened?
- If you had visualise your perfect Christmas, what would it look like? Write down your ideal festive week.
There’s no doubt about it, Christmas is a busy time, but with careful planning and consideration for your mental health and wellbeing, it can really be the most wonderful time of the year!
Do you find your anxiety increases over Christmas? Share what helps you cope in the comments.