It’s not Christmas yet, but are you over Christmas?
Now before you think I am Mr. Scrooge, I am not asking if you are over the holiday itself. Rather, are you overspending, overeating or overstressed? These three “overs” can make this time of year not so wonderful! Consequently, we need to be intentional and avoid these overages!
Overeating If you find yourself overindulging in too many gift baskets, office treats, or family baked goods, pace yourself. You can’t give in to all the goodies and not expect a weight gain. But you can moderate. If you overdo it, do not simply throw in the towel and give in to more overeating. Afterall, there are times we want to indulge in a decadent dessert or goodie and not feel guilty. So, instead of saying, “Oh I really blew it so I might as well continue to eat,” think, “OK I overindulged, but I can cut back at the next few meals.” This flexible mindset will help you moderate your holiday eating.
Overspending It’s easy to overspend during the season of giving, but we all need limits. If you find yourself impulsively buying, try these few tips. 1) Make a list and only buy what is on the list. No exceptions. 2) Get rid of your credit cards and pay with cash or check only. Hide one card for emergency use only. You may want a spouse or trusted friend to keep this card. 3) Avoid sales and discount places that give “a deal.” How often do we buy things we don’t really need because they were a good deal? 4) Avoid shopping channels and on-line purchasing. This is where most overspending occurs. 5) Substitute another behavior for the urge to shop, e.g., walk, read, meditate, or pray.
Overstressed The best remedy for being overstressed at the holidays is to shift your focus to what really matters during this celebratory time. Guard against getting lost in the commercialization of Christmas. Keep the true meaning of Christmas in focus. To do that, make time to read the Christmas story, attend holiday church activities, and send Christmas cards with a spiritual message about the season. Write a letter to a missionary and give a donation. Look around your community for ways to serve those in need. The point is to center yourself with the true meaning of Christmas, not the commercialization.
It has been said, “If the devil cannot make you bad, he will make you busy.” And too “busy” usually leads to stress and exhaustion. So, rest and don’t feel pressured to do everything if it is causing you stress. Begin your day with God’s Word and center yourself.
Enjoy this time of year and do not be overwhelmed by it. Joy comes from the awareness of the true gift of this season-God’s son and His presence. Focus your heart and mind on this:
“For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called, Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of peace.” Isaiah 9:6.
Don’t stress. Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with us. Don’t allow yourself to be over Christmas, rather experience His joy!
Are you over Christmas? Overeating, overspending and overstressed!