Christmas,  Holidays,  Lifestyle,  Series

Find the Calm in December

I love Christmas. That much should be obvious by now. But here’s the thing about the full-blown preparation: it’s stressy. There’s things to do constantly and everywhere. Either as a teacher or as a student, it’s constant crunch-time. And oh yeah, you’re supposed to buy presents and write cards and… So how on earth are you supposed to find the calm in december? Here’s some tips!


If you can plan ahead? Do so.

The number one thing that is stressy about this month, is often the feeling that you need to get everything done. But you have no idea how to actually get it done. So you plan and you make lists:

  • Gifts
    • Who are you buying gifts for?
    • Do you have a budget?
      • Per person?
      • In total?
    • Do those people have a wishlist?
    • Have you bought it yet?
      • If yes: scratch it off your to-do list
      • If no: when will you buy it?
        • Do you have to order it online?
        • Do you have to go to a store to buy it?
    • When and how will you pack?
    • When and how will you deliver your gifts?
  • Christmas cards
    • Who are you writing cards to?
      • Do you have enough Christmas cards?
    • How are you going to send them?
      • Hand them over: when will you see this person?
      • Send them via mail: do you have their adress, stamps, envelopes?
  • Events
    • Where are you going?
    • What type of events are they?
      • Dress code?
      • Do you need to bring a  gift? Card? Bottle?
      • How long will they last?
    • Who else will you know there?
      • Can you cooperate for any of the above?
  • Food
    • When are you hosting?
      • What will you make?
      • How many persons are you cooking for?
      • What will you need?
    • Do you have enough healthy options to keep yourself healthy until the New Year?

I love lists, as you probably can tell, and putting everything down on paper? Sure, it can be a bit overwhelming sometimes. It also helps, however, to make sure you know what you’re supposed to be doing. it eliminates the stress of: “oh no, I have so much to do, did I get round to everyone and everything and what if I didn’t and…”

Planning is, of course, only a first step. But – and this is the important bit – once you know when you have to be where and why? You can also figure out when you can take some time off the entire Christmas-thing. And of course: when you can have some time to…

Consciously do nothing

This sounds like such a counterintuitive thing to say for me. I’m the queen of always needing to do something. Heck, as I’m writing this, I’m also adding on to the list of things I need to do by tomorrow, watching some vlogs ànd having a conversation with my sister.

That being said – it’s really easy to overdo yourself. Especially in a period like Christmas, when the demands that are made of you and your time can often seem overwhelming.

Planning and marking down the time when you will just do nothing? It’s often the only way to make sure that what free time you have doesn’t disappear.

There’s more to this than just blocking out the time when you want to be left alone. This may come from an introvert’s perspective, but I find it really important to also try and consciously get my mind off of all things busy. Doing so, however, is not always that easy.

My main method? Read a book. But sometimes, I’m so far gone, I can’t even focus on that any more. Which is when I turn to my backups: calming music – Marconi Union’s Weighless is something that just about always manages to snap me out of any stress-funk.

Another option? The app Headspace – you get 10 introductory sessions into meditation with this one, and quite frankly? Those sessions are enough for me. The guy reading this has a really soothing voice, and the methods he talks you through really work to help you slow down a bit.

And especially in December? Slowing down a bit is necessary.

Find Christmas anywhere

This is, of course, spoken as someone who loves Christmas. One of the things that can bug me about December, though, is that it tends to get really busy. So busy that I basically end up not having the time anymore to actually pay attention to the fact that it’s Christmas.

And let’s be real – the lead-up to Christmas? Basically the best thing.

So how do you go about finding Christmas? For me, it’s quite often a matter of first taking the stress out of Christmas. That’s where the planning and the consciously doing nothing come in. Once you’ve allowed yourself that distance from Christmas? That’s when you can go look for it again.

Whether your Christmas thing is a favourite movie, a particular book or just a specific drink? Everybody has that one (or more, of course, that’s always possible) penultimate Christmas-thing. Do it, watch it read it, drink it.

Because the main thing to remember in all that business in December? The one thing that might allow you take a breath, and to allow the calm back in? That’s to remember that at the end of the month, you are celebrating Christmas. Without a single doubt, and for so many reasons? The best time of the year.

How do you get the calm back in December? Be sure to let me know below!

(And if you want to read the rest of my Blog-mas posts? Be sure to check out the tag!)