There’s just something about November and December that are ways insanely busy for me and because of that, I normally feel like if I blink, I’ll miss them. Anyone else? Also, November and December are both months where we tend to be thankful, grateful, and blessed. Right? What about stressed? Anyone feeling the stress already? We’re t-minus one day until Thanksgiving.
I honestly love this time of year so much. Am I Holiday obsessed? Possibly, yes. I love the traditions, the time spent with family and friends, the good food, the laughter, and everything that comes along with the Holidays. I polled my audience on Instagram and asked them what was their favorite part of Thanksgiving and the least favorite part. Most of the responses I received kind of shocked me:
Favorite Part of Thanksgiving
- Mashed Potatoes
- Pie and lots of it
- Casseroles (specifically broccoli and cheese or green bean casserole)
Least Favorite Part of Thanksgiving
- Time with family (dinner table conversations)
- Turkey (this doesn’t surprise me, ha)
- Cleaning up
- Interacting with so many people
It makes me sad that the Holiday’s have turned into a time that people actually sort of dread. I guess as I’ve gotten older and I see things a lot more clearly. Also, as someone who is a major introvert, having to constantly be around people and socialize day after day, is a lot to drain me. So what do we do to enjoy ourselves more and focus on things we’re thankful for??
How To Avoid The Holiday Burnout
I think there is a lot of pressure on people around the holidays. Even more so than normal days. Maybe you’re having to host people in your home. Maybe you’re hosting a meal for the first time. It’s all a lot of stress and sometimes, it ruins the actual holidays. Here are some of my favorite tips to help take some of the stress off of your plate and to actually be able to enjoy these last few months of the year.
Not Everything Has To Be Homemade
I can still picture my grandmother basically half asleep at the dinner table on Thanksgiving. She was exhausted every year and it’s because she slaved in the kitchen days leading up to Thanksgiving. While I LOVE cooking and preparing dishes, I’ve learned a little trick. You can order some things to help yourself out.
Do I cook most of the food myself? Yep, but I still take a few shortcuts. This year, I ordered cinnamon rolls to be baked on Thanksgiving morning. I also ordered Corn Souffle and Sweet Potato Casserole from a BBQ restaurant that is local to us. I also purchased pies to be baked.
Those shortcuts don’t mean your meal won’t be as delicious or that you won’t impress your guests, because you will. I just know that I’m only one person and can only do so much. Also, I think it’s important to be able to spend time with family and friends while hosting a meal. I don’t want to spend the entire day in the kitchen.
So bottom line, don’t beat yourself up if you want to order dinner from a local restaurant or grocery store. It doesn’t make your meal less impressive and I guarantee that you guests will still be happy!
You Don’t Have To Do It All
I am the absolute worst person when it comes to committing to everything. Want me to come to your party? Yep, I’ll be there. Want me to help you gift wrap? Sure, I’ll even bring some wrapping paper. However, I’ve been trying to be better about restricting my time. It doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be there for you, I just physically can’t. Again, I’m one person.
On one of our latest Influenced The Podcast episodes, Sheryl from How to Make a Life said that “Saying no is a choice; saying yes is a responsibility.” Isn’t that the most basic thing to understand that so many of us also struggle with? How many times have you said yes to something, but really hated going to said event. Just know that you can say no. Be in control of your time.
Family Drama and Politics…Yikes
There’s nothing worse than a family member who ruins a dinner by talking about religion or politics. NOTHING. I wish I had advice on this but I just roll my eyes and try to move the conversation along. In my family, we all aren’t on the same page with politics AT ALL, so I just try to ignore the remarks that will always be made.
Stupid questions that are tacky, embarrassing and often emotional will happen also. Again, I wish I had advice. I used to let them just ask me questions and pretend to not be emotional and move on. Now I use those experiences to educate them. Most of the time people don’t mean it the way it makes you feel. So I won’t ignore the questions anymore and instead, I’ll educate others.
Just know that most families have that one person who will always say something that isn’t polite or appropriate conversation. Either don’t engage or take that moment to educate them and let them know how you feel!
Eat What You Want and Be Happy
I don’t think it’s impossible to have a good holiday experience. Sure there will be people who will drive you crazy and say the wrong things to you. They’ll expect too much of you and make you feel bad when you say no. The Turkey might not come out exactly as you had hoped and hell, you might accidentally forget your dog can reach the table. That has in fact happen to us and the dog ate turkey or ham. I can’t remember which.
- Eat as many mashed potatoes as you’d like
- Eat as many pieces of pie that make you happy
- Want more cool whip?!? Go for it!
- Need to stay put this holiday? You do it! Your family will have to understand and if they don’t, that’s not on you. Sometimes you need to take care of your family and by family I mean you, your spouse or partner and children, etc.
- Don’t have time to cook? Look up restaurants that will be open!
- Want to make every recipe? GO FOR IT!
- Remember to take breaks. Force yourself if you have to.
- Don’t want to get dressed up? You don’t have to! Leggings are incredible.
- Do you want to wear a full face of makeup and dress up? Get it girl!
Eat the cranberry sauce, I know I will, and make sure you have the best experience that you can have. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to have an “instagram” worthy holiday experience. Make it your own and enjoy the little moments.
What Are You Thankful For This Year?
I’m curious what you’re thankful for? Is there anything that you’re really feeling grateful for? Share below! I want to know.
I’m thankful for all my family and friends supporting me, as well as you guys! I’m thankful to have an amazing podcast co-host who lets me ramble on occasionally. I’m grateful for a best friend who lets me talk her head off about everything. Rob and I have so much to be thankful for and we know that!