This article of mine ran last year in my newsletter. It’s just as relevant today.

Christmas 2017 – No Stress!!

In the book, “Change your Brain Change Your Life”, Dr. Amen asks two questions when it comes to all areas of our life, “What do you want? “and “Does your behavior get you what you want?” So, I have been thinking about the answers to these two questions during this Christmas season.
“What do I want?” I want a stress-free, happy, peaceful Christmas. “Is my behavior getting me what I want?” 90% of the time… yes.
I want ….
Fun, stress-free, happy, peaceful meals at our home. So, my behavior has changed. I don’t do it all anymore. All the meals I host are huge potluck adventures. I will cook a dish or two but the visiting family members happily contribute big portions to that meal so I am not stressed out cooking it all. No one minds contributing! Just because your mom could do it all, doesn’t mean we have to.
I want to visit with the people I love and are in my home visiting.
My behavior is… Paper plates are a must. They have beautiful Christmas ones. I promise I will help the environment in many other ways but I would rather visit after than wash dishes all night.
I don’t want to be going store to store trying to find the perfect gift.
My behavior is …. Gift cards replace 90% of the gifts we still buy. And I stay home in my warm house. I want to feel charitable and give back for my life. My behavior is… I donate money instead. We have eliminated most of our gift giving and have replaced that money spent with donations to charity.
I don’t want to bake.
My behavior…. I buy all of my baking. I know some of you still really like to bake but is this behavior adding stress or peace?
I want to be known as a loving person to visit.
My behavior is to choose to see my family members through my 90% lens. I know Christmas can bring together 10% people you don’t necessarily want to spent time with but if you “want” a peaceful Christmas only you can change your behavior to make that happen. Merry Christmas!