Healthy Living Self-Care

10 Ways to Survive the Holidays Stress-Free

The holidays can be a stressful time for many people. Here are 10 ways to survive the holidays and keep them stress-free!

How to survive the holidays stress free

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The holidays can be so stressful for some of us. All the shopping and cooking and cleaning and wrapping presents. And don’t forget all the holiday events going on. It’s impossible to do everything and not get a little stressed out!

Black Friday used to be so stressful for me because I wanted to get all of my shopping done that day. Over the years I finally let that thought go because it’s impossible to do. Over the past few years Black Friday has become a tradition for my mom and I. We have a list of gift ideas we want to get, but if we can’t find something it’s no big deal. It’s fun to just spend a day with my mom. Especially since our shopping day turns into a 12 hour day full of laughs.

Now with the internet and Cyber Monday I can finish my Christmas shopping online from the comfort of my couch under my blanket with my coffee in hand. And I don’t have to carry all that stuff! This is how I’ve learned to survive the holidays stress-free. At least the shopping part anyway.

I’ve come up with a list of 10 ways to survive the holidays stress-free. I hope someone finds this list helpful because my hope for you is to enjoy your holiday without any negativity or stress this year.

10 Ways to Survive the Holidays Stress-Free

Get outside

When you start feeling stressed, take a little break and go outside. The fresh air and sunshine will make you feel so much better, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

Take a walk

Take a 30-minute walk around the block or a quick hike through the woods to walk away the stress. According to, walking has a tranquilizing effect on your brain due to the repetition and rhythm it provides. This effect will improve your sleep and decrease any anxiety. It sounds like a win either way!

Sniff some citrus

Citrus scents boost energy as well as alertness. The scent of lemon can also reduce stress. While you’re cleaning for the holidays, use lemon-scented cleaners for a refreshing pick-me-up. You could also try diffusing some lemon or citrus scented essential oils around your home.

Citrus burst essential oil for surviving the holidays
lemon scented essential oil to help you survive the holidays

Just say no

Doing too much – shopping, events, cooking, etc – causes a lot of stress, especially if we’re trying to do everything at the last minute. It’s okay to say no to some of these things. You don’t have to attend every event. People will understand.

Laugh it up

Find a reason to have a good laugh. Take a few minutes to watch a funny video on YouTube or take a little longer and watch your favorite comedy movie. What makes me laugh? Watching videos of babies laughing. Gets me every time.

Don’t be perfect

Thinking everything is going to be perfect is insanely stressful. Let go of the perfectionism and you will enjoy your holiday so much more! Every single time I’ve ever tried to have the perfect anything it has turned into a hot mess. I stressed over getting everything just right and realized I wasted so much time. When I didn’t bother to be so perfect and I just let it happen, I found so much joy in the situation.


I try to wrap any presents as soon as I get them so I’m not stressing myself out by waiting until the last minute. Plus, it makes my tree look more festive if there are presents under it sooner than just Christmas day. Tip: buy extra tape ahead of time!

Keep an ongoing list

Keep a master shopping list handy so that whenever you think of something you need you can write it down immediately. I not only do this for Christmas shopping, but I also keep an ongoing grocery list as well. I’m a list girl, so I have lists for everything! My husband is a tech geek so all of his lists are on his phone or computer and mine are on paper. Whatever works for you to keep things stress-free.

Ask for help

If you have too much going on, don’t be afraid to ask for help! Asking for help is not showing a sign of weakness. I’ve had to learn this the hard way throughout my life.

Take time for yourself

Even if you have to schedule it in, make sure you’re taking a little time for yourself. Go for a massage. Or fill up a bubble bath, put on your favorite music and lock the bathroom door. My idea of relaxing quiet time is grabbing a good book and hiding in the corner of a bookstore for a while. There’s nothing like the smell of books and coffee mingling together!

What stress-free tips would you add to my list to help you survive the holidays?

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10 Ways to Survive the Holidays Stress Free

Entertaining for the holidays? Check out my post on how to clean up fast for company!

How to clean up fast for company

Are you decluttering before the holidays arrive? Check out my clutter-free series and learn how to declutter your home quickly!

Clutter Free Series Wrap Up

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