‘Tis the Season…..

Posted Dec 4 2011, 12:01 am

…for stress and stress and more #$%& stress.  

This is supposed to be a great time of year. We supposed to stroll through the mall, window shopping and listening to Christmas carols then head home to drink hot toddies in front of the fireplace. We’re supposed to enjoy the company of family and friends over dinner or at parties where we give thanks for our many blessings…..

Riiight. I want to live in that world because my world consists of trying to cram thirty hours of shopping, cooking, baking, working, present wrapping, holiday card writing/sending and I don’t know what-all into a measly twenty-four hours. Oh and then there’s that whole sleeping thing. Health experts tell us we have to find the time to sleep. Maybe on December 26th, but then I’ll miss all the after Christmas sales.

Let’s face it, each year the holidays come sooner and get more expensive. If you’re anything like me, you lie awake at night, visions of shopping lists and dollar signs dancing through your head instead of sugar plums. There just isn’t enough time in a day to get everything done that needs doing or enough money in the checking account to pay for everything that needs buying. So, what can you do to ease the stress of this normally very stressful time? Here are a couple of things I’ve found to be effective:

First, exercise. Again, if you’re like me, you’re saying, “Uh, check. Already go to the gym five days a week.” Yeah, well, maybe you need to back off to three days a week until after the first of the year. Say what?? Yup, back off. If you’re already stressed, over-stressing your body will only amplify the problem and negate any benefit from the workout. Or maybe you need to switch up your routine. If you cycle for cardio, maybe try the treadmill or step mill for a couple of weeks.

Got a lot of nieces and nephews and cousins to buy gifts for and you’re afraid of landing in the poor house as a result? Suggest a gift exchange. Draw names from a hat and that’s the person you need to seek out the *perfect* gift for. This can also be a good idea if you’ve got a tight circle of mutual friends.

Volunteer. Nothing brings home just how truly blessed we all are than serving meals at a local homeless shelter.

Do not sweat the small stuff. Easier said than done, I know, but try to stay focused on what this time of year really means. And getting upset about long lines and out-of-stocked items just isn’t it.

Get enough rest. “Yo, Lynda. If I could get enough rest, I wouldn’t be stressed.” Fair enough. Suggestions: drink chamomile tea instead of wine before bed; don’t eat chocolate for dessert; spray a lavender scent on your pillow. Another trick I like is to list the fifty states-in alphabetical order. Bet you’re dozing off by the time you get to Idaho.

Make sure to take a multi-vitamin every morning. It’ll help keep your immune system healthy and balanced.

Give thanks. Make a list of all that you’re grateful for and repeat it while sitting in rush hour traffic or standing in the checkout line. It’s also good to repeat if the sandman goes MIA.

These are a few of my favorite ways to mitigate the holiday stress. What’s yours? Post a comment or send me an email (lynda@lyndabailey.net) and you’ll be entered to win a copy of my new erotic short Glad to be Home.

Happy and safe holidays to y’all!




19 responses to “‘Tis the Season…..”

  1. Jen T. says:

    Thank you for great tips regarding holiday stress!

  2. I love your blogs. So full of good advice! 🙂
    I started a new exercise program the day before Thanksgiving. Nothing relieves holiday stress more than losing an entire inch off the waist in two weeks! Woo-hoo!

    Yes, I still have to count points and calories. Grrrr. But now I don’t mind as much! LOL

    I’ve decided to shop and ship online this year for my out-of-town brother. 🙂 Problem solved!

    Linda / Regina

    • lynda bailey says:

      Good for you Linda! Nothing’s better than shedding a few pounds right before the holiday feasting. And I’m a totally believer in online/catalogue shopping. No long lines or crabby shoppers.
      Hope your holiday is grand!

  3. My way of avoiding stress? I pretend they aren’t coming until the 23rd, and then it’s a crazy dash to get everything done. But hey, it’s a wild 30 hours, but it’s only one day.

    It’s either that or go crazy early, knowing work won’t let me get a darn thing done until about the 23rd anyway! 🙂

    I’m kidding, but only kind of…

  4. Lynda Bailey says:

    You sound like my husband–everything got done last minutes. After a quarter of a century together, though, he’s seen the light. 🙂

    But, hey, to each his/her own, right? So long as you’re not married to me. :0

    Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Hey Lynda!
    Great tips for stress relief! I’m a firm believer in NOT stressing over shopping and the material parts of the holidays. Remembering that Christmas is actually about Jesus’ birth is the most helpful stress-reliever of all! Not to say we don’t overspend and overeat 🙂 I just try very hard to minimize that and enjoy my family–which is a pretty great family! And the whole procrastination thing? I just married a guy who procrastinates as much as I do, so we can support each other at the last minute. Works for us! Have a wonderful Christmas season, roomie!

  6. I don’t get stressed around the holidays. 🙂 Well, the six hour drive to my mom’s isn’t pleasant, but it is what it is. We do gift exchanges for the adults and I have two kids and three nephews. Ooh, and soon to be another either niece (my mom is crossing her fingers) or nephew. Plus the gift exchanges come with wish lists.

    Happy Holidays! 🙂

    • Lynda Bailey says:


      You sound so organized! (Damn you! :)) Wish I could say the same. *sigh* Each year I promise myself and each year I lie.

      Have a safe trip to your mom’s house and a Merry Christmas!

  7. Ramona says:

    I have most of my cards mailed — earliest ever. And most of the shopping done, too — nephews, neices, cousins? Try adult children, adult grandchildren, and a whole herd of great-grandkids! (and looking forward to two more next year). But I downsized the actual Christmas tree, so decorating is done. Daughter volunteered to host Christmas dinner, but she’s having so much back pain and other (new) medical issues that I doubt she’ll be able. Still and all, we’ll have a good HO HO HO! Hope you have the same.

    • Lynda Bailey says:


      You certainly know how to humble a gal. 🙂 Goodness, gracious, you do have a tribe, don’t you? And congrats on the pending additions.

      Hope your daughter’s back gets better in time to carve the holiday bird. We need to get together after the first of the year.

      Hope your holiday is grand – and calm!

  8. Suzanne says:

    My everyday secret: Make a list (no more than 1 page–write big!). Do the easiest thing first. Then the next easiest thing will become the easiest. And so on. Finally, the hardest thing on the list will become the easiest, `cause it’s the only one left! You’ll get a lot of stuff done & feel so virtuous, you’ll tackle the hard stuff too.
    Fingers crossed for lots of sales for the new story. If it’s anywhere near as good as FULFILLED,

  9. Suzanne says:

    it’ll be a humdinger.
    Happy holidays to all,–Suzanne

    • Lynda Bailey says:

      Thanks for the kind words about Fulfilled, Suzanne!

      Your list idea sounds like a winner. Need to do that just to keep up with my everyday chaos. 😉

      Have a safe and Merry Christmas, girlfriend!

  10. I make a list of fun “to do’s” as well as “must do’s”. This year I’m treating my mom and daughter to pedicures on Christmas Eve. Great post Lynda!

  11. I make a list of fun “to do’s” as well as “must do’s”. This year I’m treating my mom and daughter to pedicures on Christmas Eve. Great post Lynda!

    • Lynda Bailey says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Mariposa!

      Glad you liked the post. I like you idea of a *fun* to-do list as well as a *must* to-do.

      Hope you have a safe holiday season. You’re entered in the drawing for Glad to be Home. 🙂

  12. I don’t like stress, I try to stay away from stressful situations but if I can’t I try to go to another place in my mind and ignore whats going on around me.

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