We’ve been counting down to Christmas by focusing on the 12 different emotions the holiday season can bring.
They say it’s the most wonderful time of the year, but for many people, the holidays can be busy, stressful, and can result in feelings of anxiety, worry, and despair.
I see so many women fall apart trying to create the perfect Christmas.
I just want to encourage you, as you dig out dusty decorations from the attic, call friends and relatives to make holiday plans, and create a never-ending to-do list, take a deep breath and reboot.
It’s not about creating the “perfect” Christmas; it’s about choosing an attitude of peace in any situation, so you can have a joyful Christmas season.
Letting Go of the “Perfect” Holiday
A great way to manage holiday stress is to resist the urge to create the “perfect” holiday; perfection is something that God doesn’t expect from you, so why would you expect it from yourself?
There will always be things that go “right” and things that go “wrong.”
Good holiday experiences depend on realistic expectations! You have to be willing to react to any situation with a peaceful heart.
Will family and friends remember whether or not they received your perfect Christmas card?
Will your children remember you slaving away in the kitchen to make dozens of perfect cutout cookies?
Your friends and family, especially your children, will remember YOU. They will remember spending time with you and feeling the warmth of your love and the peace in your spirit.
Loving others is all that is really required of you this holiday season.
When you set a standard of perfection, your kids feel pressure to be “on” all of the time. Letting go and accepting whatever comes your way with a peaceful spirit will teach your children to do the same.
Some of my best memories with my kids are when we laughed our way through the messy times.
Don’t let the desire to control every outcome steal your faith in what God brings about in your life.
Rejoice in life’s imperfect moments!
They remind us how much we need God’s perfect grace. In fact, Christmas is an annual reminder of the fact that we needed a perfect Savior to be the sacrifice for our imperfect sin.
To read more on this topic, go HERE and read my blog, “Why Leading By Example Is So Important.”
Trading Perfection for Reflection
Don’t just think about getting through the holidays—think about how you are going to savor them. Trade in your worry time for reflection.
Our time ⌚on earth is precious, and God wants us to savor every day, but if we are too busy to see our blessings, they feel further and further away.
For example, if you feel buried by holiday tasks or family drama, stop, breathe, and fix your thoughts on something for which you are grateful.
Philippians 4:8 tells us “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (NIV).
The enemy loves to drown you in circumstances and watch as seeds of doubt and despair turn into a negative attitude.
I promise you, what the enemy is telling you about yourself and what God has in store for you could not be more different!
No matter where you find yourself today, in a moment, God can turn it all around. He did for me, and He will for you too!
Don’t let your circumstances steal your peace! Our God is not the God of circumstances; He is the God of miracles! When you choose not to dwell on circumstances and instead rely on God’s promises, a positive attitude comes naturally.
Remember, circumstances don’t dictate your happiness; you do!
One of the best ways to overcome holiday stress is by changing what you are thinking about. This holiday season you can overcome worry by reflecting on God’s faithfulness over the past 12 months and reflecting on your dreams for the new year.
God wants to see you living your dreams; He wants to help you live your better life!
Christmas is not about decorations, or parties, or holiday comfort food; it’s about offering up our gratitude for the greatest present human beings have ever received—salvation!
Go HERE for some beautiful verses about God’s love for us. When a negative thought comes into your mind, speak to it, and cast it down with one of these verses.