By Jim Burns
For many of us, the holiday season is a time that is anticipated with both joy and anxiety. Sure, we
love the celebrations, the family traditions, and we cherish the memories of holidays gone by;
but along with them, we add the stresses of preparation, expectations, and the fear of letdowns
or family squabbles that we have experienced in the past. With this in mind, here are a few tips
that can help restore some sanity to your family, and hopefully make for an enjoyable,
meaningful holiday season.
1. Set manageable expectations.
Spend some time now setting realistic and manageable expectations for your holiday season.
Be realistic and upfront about what your family can do. Make a list of what is possible and
prioritize your most important events and activities for you and your family. Then, pace
yourself. Organize your time.
2. Acknowledge the past but look toward the future.
Life brings changes. Each season of life is different. Determine to enjoy this holiday season for
what it is. Acknowledging the past, whether it was good or bad, is appropriate. But, if you find that
this year has been a rough one and you don’t anticipate having the best holiday season ever, try
not to set yourself up for disappointment by comparing today with the “good old days.”
Take advantage of the joys the present holiday season has to offer.
3. Develop and encourage a life of gratitude.
Gratitude is an attribute that transcends circumstances. No matter what your circumstances,
there is reason to be thankful in them. Your circumstances may never change, but your
attitude toward them can change . . . and this can make all the difference. If you want to help your
kids develop an attitude of gratitude, get started by having each family member create individual
lists of “Twenty Reasons Why I’m Thankful.” Share your lists as a family on Thanksgiving or
4. Do something for someone else.
One of the ways we can demonstrate that we are grateful to God for His many blessings is to
help others. Even if this has been a difficult year for you and your family, helping others will help
you too, as your focus will move from your own circumstances into serving others. There are
always people who can use a helping hand. So, enrich this holiday season for your family by
getting involved in serving others.
For more way to move beyond the holi-daze, read the full article on theParentcue.org
For more blog posts
and parenting resources, visit: ParentCue.org