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This is it. Christmas is only a few days away, and if you aren’t ready, you are running out of time. The pressure didn’t really hit me until this weekend, because I have done all of my shopping online. Now, there isn’t enough time left to ship things for Christmas delivery, so if I need something I have to physically go to the store. Days before Christmas. God help us all.
I write often about how overloaded my schedule is, and the stress that comes along with the holiday season has intensified my lack of margin. Instead of making reservations at the nearest mental institution for my impending nervous breakdown, I have implemented a few fool-proof ways to unwind and relax to avoid letting the stress of the season get the best of me.
Setting aside regular time to journal is a relaxing, fulfilling habit that not only allows me to get my thoughts onto paper, it incorporates some of my favorite elements – nice paper and pens. I don’t know about you, but I am somewhat of a stationery addict. I don’t need a closet full of shoes, or a shiny, new car. Just take this girl to the office supply aisle and I am happy as a clam.
I have done some journaling and tracking in my planners, but recently I have started keeping a separate notebook for journaling. I make notations about my day, and jot down any to-do’s or thoughts that are swirling in my head. Not only is life more peaceful when things are on paper instead of inside your head, there is nothing better than putting a nice pen to a smooth sheet of paper. Get yourself a fountain pen. And your favorite color of ink. And just write!
Tea and Popcorn
I have had a nightly habit for many years – tea and popcorn. I brew a warm mug of tea, and make some popcorn on the stove. I might read a book, or catch up on a few TV shows, while I sip my tea and munch on popcorn.
Bigelow Tea is one of my favorites for these simple, every day moments. I just refreshed my tea stash at Walmart this week, and got a few of my favorites – Constant Comment, Salted Caramel (my kids’ favorite!) and Cinnamon Stick.
Some of the best quality time I spend with my kids is at night over our tea and popcorn. I love Bigelow Constant Comment Tea – which is a delicious, spicy orange, but my kids demand Bigelow Salted Caramel tea. Bigelow Cinnamon Stick is another favorite of mine, and the amazing smell is perfect for those every day moments during the holidays.
Some of those nights I spend with a cup of tea are also spent crocheting. Being able to channel stress and frustration into a creative outlet is incredibly calming. Maybe crochet isn’t your thing, but doodling or whatever creative endeavor you enjoy can be a worthy use of some down time. Some of my best, most creative work has formed as an outlet to relieve some of my stress.
Take an afternoon off and veg out in front of the TV. Allow yourself to read a trashy romance novel. Allow yourself too indulge in some down time.
The busier I get, the more I convince myself that every moment of my day has to be productive, and feel guilty if I take some time to just do nothing. Why do we do that to ourselves? I believe that a healthy schedule is one that isn’t jam packed, so kick the guilt to the curb and take some time to do nothing this holiday season!
So if the holiday season is testing your limits, brew a cup of tea and relax with one of these stress relievers. Check out the Bigelow tea site and tell me which flavor you would choose!