Every year when December comes, it always seems like there are too many things to do in too short of time – from shopping to gift wrapping, holiday parties, dinners and more, there can be a lot of events and activities taking up space on the calendar! Not to mention the amount of time needed for regular activities like going to work, getting groceries, going to sports class and everything else you still have to do on a daily basis. Before the festive season starts in earnest, take some time to organize the upcoming month:
Mark Up Your Calendar
The first step in organizing the calendar is to take a good at your calendar for the month of December. Make sure you have everything included that you need – from your usual activities like piano lessons and doctor appointments to any holiday related activities. Consider using a colour coding system to denote what is a regular appointment and what is a festive event. This way, you can keep track of what events are happening when. If you are using an electronic calendar, make sure you share it with your family members fo everyone is up to date on what is happening when. Physical calendars should be placed in a space that everyone has access to and walks by regularly. Everyone should know about any updates made so no one forgets what is coming up each week.
Don’t Forget The Little Things
Once you have a full accounting of your upcoming events and activities, figure out which ones require you do to any preparations (e.g. buying a new outfit, shopping for a gift, baking an appetizer) and make sure that you give yourself enough time to complete these tasks. Pencil in some time to go to the store or go through your closet to make sure you have what you need for any upcoming events. Save yourself from getting mixed up or forgetting that you promised to bring a dessert by making notes in your calendar reminders or jotting down some points in your day planner. Be specific and include everything from the time, to the location, any driving/parking notes, dress code information, and details on any items you need to bring.
Give Yourself Enough Time
No one wants to be rushing at the last minute to put a dish together, or getting stressed because they can’t find anything to wear. All of the little preparations that need to be done before each event can add up to a lot of time – so make sure enough time is made to actually get them done. For example, set aside some time in the week to get groceries for the dessert you need to bring for the office holiday party. Consider using a recipe that can be made in advance and either frozen or refrigerated so you don’t have to do anything last minute. Read through the recipe and check out the time requirements. Do you have enough time to bake it and prepare the ingredients? The same goes for wrapping gifts or finding something to wear – make sure you take the time a week or a few days in advance to get all the small tasks involved completed. This could include taking stock of what you own, buying what you need, and everything else you need to finish the project.
Ask For Help When You Need It
There can be a lot involved in getting ready for holiday events, so don’t feel like you need to do it all alone. If you need to bring a dish to a work or family function, consider calling up a friend or family member to help you put it together. There’s no harm in stopping by the store or ordering food from a service either – we all get busy and sometimes it’s the best option. When it comes to gift giving, see if anyone else in your family is going to the mall, and if they can stop by a certain store for you instead of making a separate trip. When there is so much going on, it is unpractical to think you can do everything on your own. Don’t be afraid to ask for some help so you can stress a bit less over the festive season.
It’s Okay To Say No
During the holidays the invitations to parties and holiday activities can pile up and occupy a lot of space in your calendar. However, you don’t have to feel the need to always say “yes” to every invite you get. Sometimes, there just isn’t any time to fit in multiple events. Between your regular day to day activities, it is unrealistic to expect that you can squeeze in all the extra events that take place during the holidays. To mitigate this, suggest instead that you meet up with friends and family after the holidays when everyone is less busy and has more time on their hands. You don’t always need a reason like the holidays to get together – having dinner in January doesn’t make it any less special.
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