Guess who! Is a ‘Secret Santa’ a ‘stressbuster’ for the festive season?

santaSo – we are already on to Christmas Tip No. 3 and it isn’t even December yet – but have you seen how so many people are already looking frazzled, carrying bags full of gifts they are not sure anyone will even like? Have you already browsed the ‘3 for 2’ shelves in department stores, wondering who the third, ‘free’ gift might do for? Can you actually remember what you bought people last year anyway?

You wouldn’t be alone. Many people think that the best way to ease anxiety over the ‘Christmas present rush’ is write long lists and get started early. Trouble is – too many others feel the same way…..Many people aren’t present buyers anyway; some feel it is all too commercialised, or have little money to spare and are worried that their presents won’t meet expectations. What a horrible way to celebrate what should be a time for loving and giving – with the emphasis on the loving.

So – think about a Secret Santa. It may remind you of office parties but  it can be great fun, and everyone gets one present of greater value. It also means people have more time to think about what the person they have ‘drawn’ would really like. Or people can circulate a Christmas list from which the gift can be chosen.

If you are worried about the cost, discuss a price limit. When these conversations happen well in advance they can make people feel more relaxed.

How do you cope with present shopping? Is it a trial or is it an opportunity to really show appreciation for those you love? Do you get more enjoyment from buying and giving than getting anything in return?

let’s talk! & The Terrace would love to hear from you!

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Keeping Christmas fresh and interesting…

freshchristmasOur second ‘Christmas Tip’ of the week, to ensure you come through the festive season healthily and with your relationships intact…

So today we ask the question – Has the Christmas ritual become stale, and boring?

Sometimes we just repeat what used to work, and wonder what has happened.

What can have happened is children have grown into teenagers, or left home, or formed their own relationships.  A family member may not be able to be there due to health or a bereavement.

Or perhaps it has just become ‘samey’, with any meaning drained out of it for you?

So think it through and see what would freshen it up; perhaps you could arrange a different venue? Could you think of a different mix of people, change the timing, or add in an ‘event’?

Now is the time to talk to everyone concerned, and doing that in good time means people can think about it themselves and come up with their own ideas. It doesn’t have to be more expensive – in fact it could be more meaningful to really think  about what part of the celebrations are most important to you.

When a ritual has become dead for one person it normally has for others too – naming it can be a relief and stimulate new ideas. You might be concerned about upsetting other people’s routine – but they may just be waiting for someone to take that step for them!

Perhaps it could be you?