***This article originally appeared in my Help-Organize-Life.com newsletter. I thought it would be a timely post to share with my readers here also. Enjoy!***

Christmas Cake

Image credit: Sharon Grimshaw

The Holidays are upon us! How ready are you for the onslaught of this crazy time of year? What is your game plan for pulling off the most stress free Holiday season possible? Well if you have no earthly idea or your answer is nothing to any of these questions then you are in luck. Having a game plan for the Holiday season will ensure that you will enjoy every single second and will be able to relax with family and friends. Follow the five steps outlined below to get started on the right foot.


STEP 1: Game Plan

List and prioritize your Holiday activities. Make your gift and card lists now. Set your limit (budget) for gift giving to family and friends.

STEP 2: Group and Reduce

Work from the above list and eliminate the activities you and your family do not wish to continue. Eliminate the activities from your prioritized list that you and your family do not wish to attend or participate in. Don’t feel bad when you do this. Your time is valuable and your Holidays should be spent doing activities that you and your family would enjoy, not what you should or were guilted into doing. Get your family to help you pick out what activities they would like to do also.

Also pare down your gift giving list and card list. Make sure that you have up-to-date contact information for everyone on your list. Buy your Christmas cards in bulk for work friends and people that you are not that close to but have to give a card to.

STEP 3: Assign a Place

Once you have your lists cut down and all your information in place, create a place to put this list so that you will have a much easier time next year and will be able to make adjustments as time goes on.

This list is what you will now use to create your timeline for the rest of the month.

STEP 4: Contain and Label

On your family calendar write down when, where and what you are going to do each activity and any other days necessary to complete the activity. Try to give yourself plenty of time to complete everything that you have planned without feeling rushed.

 STEP 5: Evaluate and Maintain

Is this plan easy to follow? If not revisit and tweak as needed to you or anyone else in your family can pick up the list and carry out the tasks with no problem. Revisit your list on a yearly basis to make sure that it still fits with you and your families lifestyle.

Now that you have a game plan you and your family can take any activities or invitations that may come up and decide against your holiday calendar if it will fit into your schedule and not the other way around. You will be assured to have a stress free Holiday by following this game plan.




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