Keep a joyful balance this holiday season

Things are starting to ramp up for the holidays. People are busy going to concerts, Christmas bazaars, community events, then there’s the invitations to parties, all that shopping to do and the planning for family activities. It is enough to make your head spin! The pressure builds and so does the stress.

If you are like most people, you want to please everyone and might feel like you’ve failed if you can’t do everything. This can be more intensely felt by those who find themselves in difficult situations, whether due to family tragedies, difficult relationships, mental health issues, loneliness, financial difficulties, losses of all kinds, and many other reasons.

Many of us either try to do too much or feel that we just do not live up to that perfect Christmas movie expectation. This really can be a wonderful time of year, if you take a few moments to take stock of what’s really important in your life and make choices that will help keep you from feeling overwhelmed.

One useful step is choosing to attend events that are most important to you. While all pre-holiday events are worthy and lots of fun, you can’t do it all. Don’t worry about disappointing event holders or people who invite you – it’s very likely they are in the same situation and will understand.   

Remember that advertisements and commercials get a boost holiday shopping season. Don’t buy into the hype that you have to get it all. Instead, think of ads to be gift suggestions. Remember, less is often more and one heartfelt gift means more than a pile of shiny trinkets.

When it comes to giving, one the best things we can give is our time. Spend time visiting people in your community who are stuck at home, take a person who is alone out for coffee – or maybe offer someone a ride so they can do some shopping. Yes, we are all really busy before Christmas, but you can always invite someone for a visit later in the holidays.

If you are creative or crafty share your gift, write a story or a poem, make some craft items or knit socks or a scarf. If it is a little late for that, make a list of what you can make for others next year. Having a plan feels good.

If you are still feeling overwhelmed, don’t forget to talk to people. You might be surprised at how many others might share your situation. Just the act of sharing reduces holiday season stress levels.

For more on Townshippers’ Association and our activities, keep reading this column in the Brome County News and visit our website You can also follow us on Twitter @Townshippers and Connect with Townshippers’ offices in Sherbrooke at 100 – 257 Queen, 819-566-5717, toll-free: 1-866-566-5717, or Lac-Brome at 3-584 Knowlton Rd, 450-242-4421, toll-free: 1-877-242-4421.

Publication: About Townshippers, Brome County News, Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Photo Credit: JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Photo Caption: The holiday season can be a wonderful time of year, but it can also be overwhelming. Taking stock of what’s important can help you find a joyful balance throughout the season.