Reducing Holiday Stress: 6 Ways to Prepare Your Home For the Holiday Rush

October 2, 2023

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The first week of October for our family is basically like the gunshot that signals the start of a marathon. Birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, school activities, family visiting, traveling to visit family, kids out of school, work deadlines. The holiday season, with all its festive charm, often brings a less welcome companion – stress. So how can we reduce holiday stress so that we actually enjoy our holidays?

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For us, this starts at home. With strategic home preparations, holiday stress doesn’t have to define the season, and you can make your home consistently calm and a joy to be in. Here are some of the ways we prepare our home to reduce holiday stress.

1. Set Up a Holiday Command Center:

A designated spot in your home for holiday planning can be a life-saver when things get really busy. This festive hub, complete with school calendars, shopping lists, holiday cards, addresses, stamps, and a running list of people you’d like to buy gifts for so you can jot down ideas easily–centralizes tasks, making it easier to manage responsibilities and reduce holiday stress. (Our kitchen desk is our command center!)

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2. Stock Up for Stress-Free Holidays:

Avoid last-minute scrambles by keeping essential holiday and home supplies at hand. Think: wrapping materials, batteries, key ingredients for your festive meals or an impromptu snack, household goods you don’t want to be caught without (never create a situation where a guest needs to ask for toilet paper), being prepared is a proactive step to reduce holiday stress. I love to keep little gifts wrapped that I can have on hand for those that stop by with a gift in hand.

3. Quiet Spaces: Your Stress Relief Corners:

Carving out peaceful pockets in your home provides an immediate escape from the festive frenzy. For us, this is our bedroom, but whether it be a reading nook or meditation corner, somewhere to escape is vital to rejuvenate and destress. Keep this space clear of mail, gift messes, and you may even want to skip seasonal decor in here.

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4. Entertainment Preparedness Minimizes Stress:

Having options ready for both planned and impromptu gatherings is a fun way to prepare for the holidays. There’s nothing better than friends stopping by and you being able to invite them in and spend unplanned time together, serving up tasty treats on the fly, ensuring everyone feels welcome. That’s what the holidays really are. While we keep our games stored upstairs in the playroom, we keep a few fun group games (<<linked our favs!) in a cabinet in the dining room to pull out. We love to stock up our s’mores basket this time of year, but seasonal treats from Trader Joe’s go very far, as well!

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5. Tech-Free Zones: Enhance Connection, Reduce Stress:

Frequent tech interruptions can heighten stress. Designating times in your home as “screen-free” encourages genuine interactions, helping reduce holiday stress by focusing on meaningful connections. We go screen free as soon as the dinner bell rings!

6. Ready Your Guest Spaces to Reduce Holiday Stress:

Preparing for your guests ahead of time means less last-minute hustle. From ensuring comfort with fresh linens to small touches like Wi-Fi details, snacks and toiletries. Anticipate the needs of your guests to ensure a stress-free stay. (See more of our tips for prepping for guests here!)

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While the holiday season is inevitably bustling, it can also be what we all want it to be – a time for focusing on fun, family, belief, and connection. By adapting and preparing your home, you can actively reduce holiday stress, ensuring you and your loved ones truly enjoy the entire holiday season.

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What do you think?

  1. Erin kessler says:

    I love this! I needed to hear each one of the steps. I’m prepping my command zone and I think that’s going to help me out tremendously! My brain is so fried during the holidays now that I’m the adult creating all the magic for my family to enjoy I find I often leave myself out, like joining in and making a gingerbread house (I usually only buy them for the kids and I help/clean up but don’t do any of the fun, I’m changing that this year too.) also liked the tip of keeping all the gift craziness out of the master bedroom, and possibly not having any Christmas decor in there. I’ve gone crazy filling each room in the past and this year I’m focusing on making the house feel like Christmas more with smells, music, lights and a lot less of the little decorations everywhere. Thanks again!

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