Column 44 – 11 Steps for a Stress Free Holiday Season! By the FlyLady, Marla Cilley

 Every year we declare that this year we will be ready for the holidays and every single year we find ourselves wrapping gifts or running to the grocery at the last minute. Do you want to have a stress free holiday? I can see you affirming this with your head nods! Well it is not going to happen if you just sit and wish things could be different. It is going to take a little action on your part for you to have a peaceful Cruise through the Holiday. Are you ready to look at some simple ways to keep your life calm during the holidays?

1. Crisis Clean your home with our podcast! Clear your clutter to get ready for more stuff to come into your home and keep your home maintained with your routines.
http://www.flylady.net/d/getting-started/flying-lessons/crisis-cleaning/

2. Pick up after yourself and follow our Holiday Cruising Missions.

3. Keep up with your holiday spending on: Food, decorations, food and travel. We have a FREE Holiday Control Journal for you to print out! http://www.flylady.net/i/pdf/hol_coj.pdf

4. Stop the holiday WHINE! Commit to doing one thing each day to prepare for the holidays.

5. Have a family meeting to discuss what traditions each member of your family loves and hates. Please listen!

6. Decorate in babysteps! Let go of your perfectionism of getting it all done at one time. Make a pleasant nightly ritual of putting one ornament on the tree or putting up one decoration.

7. Let go of the guilt and last minute stress of making “Homemade” gifts. Start now and keep it simple.

8. Plan your holiday menus now and start buying your groceries with each visit to the grocery store. This means for your holiday baking too! Cookies, cakes, breads and rolls.

9. Make a gift list of all you want to buy for. Establish an amount that you want to spend and stick to it. Start shopping now. Also think about “Clutter Free” Gifts. Gifts of time.

10. Set up a gift wrapping station. This consists of one roll of paper, tape, scissors, ribbon and a tag. Less is more.

11. Your family can’t read your mind, help them and help yourself by letting go of the Holiday Martyr. Write down what you would like for a gift and give them your list. We ask our children to do this so that we at least have some idea. All they want to do is please you.

With our Holiday Cruising Missions; our goal is to be ready for the holidays by December 1st. We are pretending that we are going on a Holiday Cruise that is going to last for three weeks. If we were really going on a cruise we would have to have everything ready for our departure. By getting everything done by December 1st we are free to have fun and not be stressed out by the holidays.

Are you ready to enjoy the holidays for the first time ever?

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