This next week is the kick-off to the holiday season and I am expecting that it will be different for each of you in comparison to previous years. Between my parents and the families of my five siblings, we usually split up the menu, the cleaning, the decorating and errands. Cooking occurs in 4-5 different kitchens before it is all brought together in my parent’s home. This process makes feeding 20-30 adults appear easy.
My family will not be traveling to Texas this year so I started to take stock of what all needs to happen this week. There will only be five of us this year in my home. I could feel anxiety building up as I pulled out my Thanksgiving planner and realized that there was a lot to do. Eeeek!
What do gatherings look like for you and your friends and family? This year the festivities will probably be different. What all has to happen and who usually does it? What can you afford to do?
Let’s look at this week’s activities.
What is your family going to do this year?
Who are you going to spend the day with?
What needs to be done?
Who’s the event planner in your family?
What will be on your menu?
- Who is paying for what?
Who’s the shopper?
Who’s the cook?
Who cleans up?
If the answer is ‘me’ to most of these questions, what can you do to reduce your stress and anxiety this week? If you do not own any of the duties listed above, what can you step up and do?
Look at the invite list. Is there anyone who can share the workload and errands? How much meal prep can occur ahead of time and who will do it? How are you going to build in a way to make sure that you get to enjoy the day as well?
Holidays should be enjoyed by all. By planning out the day and the participants, you can come up with a plan to ensure that everything gets done and that everyone gets to enjoy the day.
As you look forward to all of the different celebrations coming up in the next 6 weeks, apply this same approach to all of them. After everyone has enjoyed their feast, make a preliminary plan for any upcoming gatherings so that everyone knows what their future tasks will be. By laying the framework out, it will make for a more pleasant and less stressful experience for all.