Snowflakes tickling our tongues, colored lights blinking on rooftops and the love we share with others.
The holiday season doesn’t have to be limited to a money-hued time of stress.
Surely, it can be taxing.
Closed off emotions surface; family members, perhaps, argue; and Santa might have stopped visiting years ago—but this doesn’t mean that we still can’t get back in touch with the childlike joy that’s latent in all of us, waiting to be unwrapped and discovered.
Regardless, these eight tips are almost guaranteed to help the rest of this year go smoothly—and enjoyably.
1. Watch It’s a Wonderful Life.
This movie is a holiday classic for a reason: we adults, sadly, often forget what’s important this time of year.
We allow ourselves to become overwhelmed with the responsibilities of daily life and we forget the magic and the gift of simply being alive.
I’m writing this while my daughter is in the bath playing. We’re listening to Pandora Radio’s Christmas station and she’s shooting water out of her rubber duck’s mouth at me.
I’m sitting here on the bathroom floor with soaking wet pants—and a huge grin.
In short, kids aren’t the only ones who should be making time to play.
3. Eat a g.d. cookie.
4. Look at Christmas lights.
This doesn’t have to be elaborate.
Walk around your neighborhood and check out the twinkling houses. Go on a drive.
Added bonus: listen to cheesy holiday tunes.
5. Don’t forget to treat yourself.
The holidays can be stressful, whether we like it or not. One of the best ways that I’ve found to enjoy this time of year is to remember that I deserve to be treated too.
For example, last weekend I went for a pedicure. (I never do that.) And let me tell you, I’m definitely a much jollier shopper now.
6. Make new memories.
Most people either have great or horrid childhood memories from this time of year.
My suggestion: make new memories—every year.
Check in with what works best this year and do that rather than trying to recreate last year—or avoid it.
7. Listen to this. Seriously.
8. Believe in magic.
Just once. Just for tonight.
Wish on a star. Believe in that “impossible” fantasy.
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Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photos: author’s own, wikimedia commons