Turn Your Christmas Woes Into Ho Ho Ho's With This Festive Survival Guide

It’s that time of year again!  (image)

Christmas is coming faster than Santa’s turbo-powered sleigh, so it’s no wonder many of you will be getting ready for this most festive of seasons. Frantic attempts at Christmas shopping, the untangling of lights, and stocking the pantry as if there was about to a great big food shortage. These are all elements of the run-up to Christmas that are common to many of us. With a note to the latter: please don’t buy ALL the food on the shelves, as there WILL be a shortage. Leave some for the rest of us!

Do you enjoy Christmas? Most people do, though many of us would sooner skip over the festive holiday and get back to normal life. Why? We have already told you… the shopping, the lights, the food (wave goodbye to those weight-loss plans)...and more. In this article, we will list some of the Christmas woes common to many of us. But fear not! To ensure your Christmas shines brighter than your neighbour’s decorative light display (pity his electric bill), we will offer some festive cheer to offset some of the stresses that some of us endure. So, with a ho ho ho, let’s begin this slightly irreverent guide to surviving Christmas this year (and in all the years to come).

Let the woes begin…

Christmas gifts for difficult to buy for people

Christmas woe: There are some people in our lives who are difficult to buy for. They may be relatives we barely know, or they may be people who simply seem to have everything. You don’t want to present them with a gift, watch them excitedly open the wrapping, and then suffer the awkwardness as they thank you kindly, and ask if you still have the receipt. They may be ungrateful, but you have probably bought them something irrelevant to who they are, or they may already own the item you bought them. Bah!

Festive cheer: Our first piece of advice is this. Buy them nothing. Honestly, if you barely know the person, what is the point in buying them something in the first place. You don’t want to offend them by not buying them something, but you stand a greater chance of offending them by buying them something rubbish. On the other hand, if you are buying for that friend or relative who already has everything, consider something more personalised. A chocogram, or something handcrafted by yourself will ensure you can show some originality in what you buy them, and it’s unlikely they will already have the item. Result!

Christmas gifts you can’t stand

Christmas woe: You know that tie-shaped package under your tree? The one that looks like a tie, feels like a tie, and probably smells like a tie… guess what, it probably is a tie! Not only that, but it probably has a beautifully (tackily) printed snowman emblem on the front as well. This is the kind of present you probably hate. The gift that you are forced to wear to work just in case your friend or relative is offended by your refusal to buy that ‘carefully selected’ gift. 

Festive cheer: Well, you could be that person who casually mentions the receipt, but you might want to pre-empt the tie-based horrors on Christmas morning by casually mentioning other gift ideas weeks before the big day. You may lose the element of surprise, but at least you will get something you will want to use, rather than something that will (accidentally) find its way into the refuse collection on Boxing Day.

The intrusion of people visiting your home

Christmas woe: There are people you love to have visiting your home during Christmas, and others you would sooner put a restraining order on, rather than have them dragging their filthy boots and manners into your well-cared for property. But it’s Christmas! The time of year when you have to put up with those relatives and neighbours with a fake smile on your face, despite deep down loathing that would only shame you if anybody knew how you secretly felt.

Festive cheer: You aren’t alone in your misery, and chances are your visitors feel the same way about you. If you make an effort to be nicer, you may find something good about that other person, and their visit may not be as intolerable as you imagined. On the other hand, if they are the worst people in the world, consider going away for Christmas, rather than spending time at home. Take a look at these popular destination ideas. Not only will you be away from cousin Billy and his brood of kids, but you will also grab yourself some rest and relaxation to boot. 

There is too much Christmas cheer

The first verse was fine… but the twentieth?  (image)

Christmas woe: There’s no getting away from Christmas. The traditional movies are playing on the box, the local stores are piping out festive jingles from mid-November, and you get a deluge of Christmas carollers who aren’t as in tune as they think they are. Every time you leave your home you get some passer-by wishing you a ‘Merry Christmas’ with a hearty cheer (whatever that is) and all you want to do is have a few minutes when you aren’t bombarded with the literal and figurative tinsel and glitter that the world is throwing at you.

Festive cheer: Ask yourself this. Are you the Grinch? Do you hate Christmas that much? Actually, you aren’t alone, as not everybody enjoys the holidays. There is a lot of stress, loneliness, and expectation to ‘appear’ happy, even when you don’t feel in the Christmas spirit. If the holidays do get you down, don’t feel as if you have to conform to what other people are doing. If you are feeling lonely, let people know how you are feeling. If you’re sick of the endless stream of Christmas movies, invest in Netflix and watch something else instead. Christmas is a time of giving, so you might want to reject the commercial aspects and throw yourself into charity. Alternatively, shout ‘bah humbug’ at your neighbour, and revel in your grumpiness!

If the season does get you down, remember, it’s only a few days each year. However, we hope you have a wonderful Christmas, despite the expected stresses ahead. Take care!

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