Managing expectations at Christmas time 

And it’s that time of year again. 

 Somehow Christmas manages to sneak up on us again, every single year.  

Then it’s a mad rush of shopping, planning, organising, cooking, managing and wrapping. Some people love it, some people hate it, but most people will agree that it can be a hectic and stressful time of year. 

One of the most stressful parts can be managing the expectations of our families, kids and selves. That’s why we’ve put together this quick guide to help you stay on top this festive season. 

 How to manage expectations this festive season: 

  • Don’t make any promises that you can’t commit to. Whether it’s hosting the family Christmas event, providing the turkey and prawns, buying presents for the extended family or providing your helpful services for any other reason – don’t put extra pressure on yourself by making promises that are too stressful to keep. 
  • Set realistic expectations – if your kids have an out of control Christmas wish list, sit them down and talk to them about what is and isn’t realistic, and remind them that holiday times aren’t about expensive gifts. 
  • Create a budget and stick to it. There’s no need to subject yourself to both an actual hangover and a financial hangover on Boxing Day. Know what your limits are, and celebrate within your means.  
  • Go with the flow. If Christmas isn’t living up to your expectations or is proving to be a disappointment compared to previous years… let it go. Sometimes you just need to relinquish control and go with it. 
  • Express gratitude – Christmas bring out different feelings for different people. Sometimes these feelings can include loneliness, sadness, conflict or tension. This doesn’t mean there isn’t also space for gratitude and feeling thankful for the things we do have. 

 If you feel like you may need some additional support or strategies to help manage the stress around this Christmas time, then Mindstar might be able to help.