The month of December and the lead up to Christmas time are very hectic for many people. The end of year is typically a time for people to try to get as much done as possible before the New Year. December is full of Christmas parties, late nights, decorating, shopping and social gatherings.

All of this activity is consuming and exhausting so here are some tips on how to manage at Christmas time:-

  • Keep a diary/schedule of events and be realistic about your attendance.
    • Don’t overcommit. Learn to say no.
  • Limit your alcohol content
    • Have a designated driver.
  • Get adequate sleep every night.
  • Allocate at least one hour each day to self-care, whatever that may be for you, e.g. reading a book, getting a massage, listening to music, meditating, a Yoga class or a walk.
  • Continue with an exercise routine.
  • Eat healthily and allow yourself some cheat days however avoid overindulging.
  • Avoid toxins and stressors including people. If that person upsets you, avoid them or limit contact. No one needs energy vampires.
  • Don’t feel obligated to buy Christmas presents. There is no price tag on spending quality time with people and showing kindness.
  • Volunteer your time to the less fortunate as this puts things in perspective and cultivates an attitude of gratitude.
  • Spend some time reflecting on the past 12 months and celebrate your successes, both large and small.
  • Do not feel obligated to get into the holiday spirit.
    • Spend the time however you want. If you want to relax then do so. You don’t have to decorate the tree, put up lights, bake, cook, go to endless social events or invite anyone to your home if you don’t want to.
  • Pace yourself.

Do you find this time of year stressful? How do you intend to spend the rest of the year?

Jolene King is Principal Consultant of 246 King Consulting ( She is a trained Occupational Psychologist, experienced Human Resource professional, is a qualified Mental Health First Aider and is trained in mental health conditions and exercise, health and nutrition. She can be reached at