With the countdown to Christmas Day many people are busy shopping, wrapping gifts, planning meals, baking cookies, attending parties, concerts, children’s plays and other events, visiting Santa and the list goes on and on. Dr. Michael Rice is a professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing and the Director of the Behavioral Health Education Center for Nebraska and has this advice for those running on empty. He says first and foremost put the season in perspective. Expectations are often unrealistic and pressure put on a person by others to meet those expectations has no basis in reality.
Dr. Rice says if your family tradition includes a buffet or snack table a mile long you may want to think about changing that tradition. He says if people try to mimic what their grandmother did during the holidays and bake dozens of cookies while holding down a full-time job is totally inappropriate. He says there is no shame in scaling it back.
Dr. Rice says many parents feel their child will be disappointed if they do not receive everything on their wish list. He says disappointment is part of life especially if some of the requests are out of line or too expensive. He says the latest technology is 100-times more expensive than a “hoop and a stick”. He says we are living in a very different world economically and we have to keep things in perspective.
Dr. Rice says you can’t be everything to everybody so if your Christmas Day schedule includes getting up early, opening gifts, heading to church then to the first set of grandparents, then the second set of grandparents, then home to make dinner, clean up and go caroling, you are setting yourself up for stressful day.