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Wishlist Item No. 1: A Stress-Free Christmas Season

) Katrina Gadong |

Holidazed and confused? You are not alone; this holly, jolly season of cheer is also a time of overwhelming stress for most. And it's easy to see why: attempting to prepare your best dishes for more than a dozen people when you could barely perfect it for your small family, reuniting with those aunts and uncles who can't stop asking when you'll get married, buying those extra special presents on your godsons' and goddaughters' wishlist, and experiencing the horrible traffic, to name a few.

But even with the possibility of things getting any worse, you can lessen the room for mishaps when you come prepared. Aside from the careful planning, it is highly suggested that you do your gift shopping (and wrapping) ahead. Even if you're used to it, last-minute will most likely not do the trick this time. Here are a few more tips to keep the merry in Christmas.

Avoid too many commitments
Expect that your calendar will be filled with invitations to holiday activities--an office year-ender, a high school reunion, a Christmas countdown party, a family get-together--but know that you don't have to attend each and every one of them. Set your priorities and understand your limits because those will define your schedule. Just be honest and reasonable with what you can handle.

Don't overeat (or overdrink)
Again, remember your boundaries. While Christmas is usually the perfect excuse to overindulge and the buffet table adorned with the for-the-holidays-only dishes is such a tempting sight, don't be easily swayed to finish that lechon (roasted pig) in one bite or down that red wine in one big gulp. More often than not, you are always off to party so make sure you watch out for the calorie intake and pace yourself; you don't wanna get knocked out at the first hour of the party and, not to mention, worry about losing the added holiday weight.

Make time for downtime
It's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle that most people forget to have some time for peace and quiet. Be intentional and remember the reason for the season. Carve out some hours in the day to reconnect with friends and family, perhaps even do a Christmas devotional or Advent plan together. Slow down so you can take in the joy, merriment and thankfulness.

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