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Podcast Ep. 11 – 10 Ways to Reduce Family Stress for the Holidays
Grace Based Families

 
 
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The Holiday season is wonderful, but it can also be one of the most difficult and stressful times of the year. In this episode, Karis and Michelle share ten ideas that can help to reduce the stress of the holidays.

1.) Use the word “NO” liberally when it comes to adding new commitments to your schedule, especially commitments that recur weekly or monthly.

2.) Turn some “Yes’s” into “No’s.” For a season, eliminate some negotiable activities from your schedule and see if you truly miss them. 

3.) You be the host. If you have a lot of family members who want to spend time with your family for Thanksgiving or Christmas, YOU should think about being the one to host the gatherings.  

4.) Set event limits. Before you are in the thick of it, determine how many holiday activities you are going to attend outside your home. Set a limit and stick to it.  

5.) Limit the amount of extracurricular activities that your kids participate in. Our family limits it to one artistic (musical) and one sports activity per child. If you have more than two children though, even this might be too much. You need to take a very hard look at how much your kids are signed up for. 

6.) Establish a “Time Budget.” This is not meant to be legalistic, but rather an exercise to see if you are spending the majority of your time on things that align with your overarching values and goals for your family. 

7.) Prioritize. Of the negotiable activities that you say “yes” to, list them in order of importance. Place a higher value on relationships then tasks. Take into account this hierarchy: God first, spouse second, kids third.

8.) Set up “Family work times.” Chores are a fact of life, and in a family it’s important that these are shared as much as possible. A great way to get a lot done quickly is to have a set block of time (30 min-1 hour) where all members of the family will work in a concentrated fashion, with an earned reward at the end of the time period. 

9.) Schedule “un-scheduled” time. Every week block off a day or a few hours where no-one is allowed to put anything on the schedule.  During this time, try to “unplug” from electronics and just enjoy being together. 

10.) Constantly re-evaluate. Remember that this is a balancing act that you will always have to work to maintain.  Busyness is one of the most common tools that Satan uses to render us ineffective as Christians. And a hectic schedule really ramps up the family stress. Work with wide margins!

Resources and Links:

-For more information about Family Matters, go to familymatters.net

-Questions or comments? Email us at family@familymatters.net

-Follow us on social media: facebook.com/FamilyMatters

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