Your Ultimate Last-Minute Holiday Advice for Being Stress-Free and Getting Everything Done

holiday tips

Don’t miss the holidays, they’re almost over!

Have you given up on being in control of your holidays? It’s no longer about what you wanted to do — now is the time to do what’s important.

Here are a few last-minute pieces of advice for having a successful, stress-free holidays:

Simplify your plan

Are you in over your head? Fear not, you’re not alone. Festive holiday emotions bring out the biggest aspirations in all of us. But you must lower your expectations and reduce your workload. Start by making a list of everything you need to do, now cut the list in half by eliminating non-essential items. Then, cut that list in half by making vital choices of what’s really important. It’s go-time now, so stick with the essential and forget the rest. Ten days from now, only the important parts will count.

Plan over coffee

Don’t get out of bed and start running. Slow down your world for 15 minutes each morning and plan the next day of your life. Make a “must-do” list and double-check your appointments. Make a habit of using your day planner and checking off your to-do list. Start your New Year’s Resolution to be more organized with your time early, start today.

Be healthy

Shorter, busier, and colder days only mean one thing — more time spent indoors with less physical activity. Schedule a 15-minute walk outside each day for the rest of December. A little fresh air and exercise goes a long way toward reducing your stress. At work, step outside with a co-worker and talk about something besides work.

Go online

Get holiday recipies, or shop, and shop again. Get directions, find some useful advice like this, communicate with friends, or do whatever you can to leverage your time through the internet. It’s all there online, so use it to your advantage.

Skip the cards

If they’re not sent yet, stop worrying. Instead, spend 10-15 minutes writing five sentences of gratitude to each of your important friends and family members. (Get the others done after Christmas, if you choose.) Lose the guilt. These days a thoughtful email is much more personal than the mass-produced, perfectly-staged, generically-messaged photo cards that have become all the rage. Don’t get fancy. Write from the heart.

Be Santa

In other words, remember the big picture here. The holidays represent many significant ideas and traditions, but the one you can honor today is the quality time spent with family and friends. If your actions are in alignment with your goals, this shouldn’t be too difficult of a plan to follow. Focus on the people, the conversations, and the sights and sounds. Give yourself over to the occasion.

Have a safe and joyous holidays from all of us at Day-Timer!

[photo by D'Arcy Norman]
Jeff Doubek Day-Timer Spokesperson Jeff Doubek can be reached at