Are you looking forward to the holiday season or dreading it because your to-do list is weighing you down? What would it feel like if you could delegate a few things (or at the very least have some help carrying out those tasks) and lighten your load so you can spend more time preparing your heart for Christmas this Advent?
Read on to learn more about 5 things you can easily delegate or ask for help that will free up your time and lighten your load this upcoming holiday season.
Are you like me & get caught in the trap of thinking you have to do it all? Does your to-do list include:
- making all the food
- making all the cookies & candies
- sending out all the cards (complete with photos, letter, hand-written greetings, stuffing, addressing, stamping, addressing & getting them to the post office)
- purchasing or making all the gifts as well as wrapping them
- traditional activities like gingerbread houses or other crafty activities
- figuring out schedules & making all the things happen
- attending or leading an Advent series at church
- writing all the thank yous
Where does that leave any time to prepare your heart for Christmas? Much less any energy to do so?
While your situation is unique, let’s explore some ways you can delegate or ask for some help for at least some of these things. You’re pulled in enough directions as it is. Delegating, asking for help or even letting go of certain tasks will allow you to enjoy the season instead of dreading it.
Do you make every single thing on the menu for your family get-together? Inform everyone now that this year will be a pot luck. Email out a list of foods that are needed & have everyone sign up. Maybe the person who has to travel from out of state is in charge of the buns (or something else they can easily purchase once they arrive). The sooner you do this, the more time others have to prepare.
Maybe you decide to scrap the whole huge, home-made feast all together & do make your own sub, frozen pizza or brats & coleslaw?
My mom makes the BEST Christmas candies & cheesecake. I’m not sure our Thanksmas (Thanksgiving & Christmas all together) celebration would be quite the same without them–especially her snickers bars. But she’s been cutting back every year and if she asked one of us to make something, she knew we would be happy to do so. She quit making cut out cookies several years ago-which is just fine because several of us don’t eat wheat.
This year instead of making any desserts for our celebration with our children & grandchildren, I’m going to purchase a box of cookies & candies from my church’s annual cookie walk.
That way we get a variety without having so many leftovers. You could also place an order with a local candy maker or caterer who specializes in desserts and help support a local business.
I love sending & receiving Christmas cards from family & friends. It really is a highlight of my holiday season. However, it’s usually up to me to make sure the pictures are taken, the card is created & ordered, letter written & printed, envelopes stuffed, addressed, stamped & it all gets to the post office. That last bit seems to be the hardest part….
Depending on what’s going on, I’ve forgone the letter and even sent cards at other times (Valentines, Easter, Thanksgiving, etc). You could do these things or delegate some of the other jobs to lighten your load. My Favorite Handyman is usually willing to stuff & stamp envelopes. Sometimes he’ll even address envelopes & get them to the post office.
Shopping for & wrapping gifts eats up a ton of time. Even if you go the Amazon route, it takes time to search for the perfect gift. Some people do it all year long & keep track of what they’ve purchased for whom & do it all little by little. (I’m personally not very good at remembering what I’ve gotten for whom.)
Some people are great at choosing/making gifts for others and I have received many amazing gifts over the years. However, that is not my forte.
Something I’ve learned to do over the years is to just plain ask others what they want. I love picking from a registry-like list. Or purchasing a gift card. It just makes it so much easier. The giver is happy, the receiver is happy and there’s no awkward, “Thanks……..” and then they never use it.
You could also pare down gifts at gatherings by setting rules or giving experiences instead of things. You could decide to do one of several game-like gift exchanges.
And don’t forget to ask for help in wrapping! Make it a ‘date night’ with your spouse, grandkids, nieces/nephews or friends. Of course, you’ll want to make sure they’re not helping you wrap the gift you have for them. 🙂
Whether is caroling, decorating gingerbread houses or cookies or other traditional activities, delegate some of those steps out to others who will be participating.
Invite someone to make the cookies, make the frosting, buy the sprinkles or candy. I really like the idea of everyone bringing all the sprinkles they already have in their cupboards.
If you’re caroling, ask someone to gather a list of people & addresses to share the tidings of comfort & joy with. Have someone else put together the song list & print it out, if you don’t have it already. Put someone else in charge of making sure the hot cocoa or cider is waiting when you return.
What else can you think of?
These are some ideas to get you started. And starting may be the biggest hurdle to overcome. All too often, we think we’re the only one who can do it. Or no one will want to help out.
However, I find when I chunk it up and ask for help in smaller tasks, I almost never hear, “No.” People generally want to help out, but if they’re never asked, they’ll never have the opportunity to let their light shine and lighten your load.
What you going to delegate or ask help with this year? How are you going to invite others to let their light shine? I’d love to hear more about what works for you so be sure to share with us in the comments below.
Join us on a Journey to Jesus this Advent with my Free 21 Day Advent Challenge. In just 15 minutes a day, you’ll be able to quiet your body, mind & spirit with short (5-7 minute) scripture-based guided meditations so you can connect with God & prepare your heart for Christmas.
We start Sunday, November 27th (1st Day of Advent) and I’d love to have you join us! Click on the link below & register today!
If you know someone else who may enjoy this Journey to Jesus, invite them to sign up too!