Time Management for the Holidays (holidaymanagement)

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Time Management During the Holidays

Submitted by Lorene Bartos, UNL Extension Educator

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With the holidays a few days away we are all trying to get everything done with a limited amount of stress. Setting priorities and managing our time and energy will help accomplish the tasks yet to be completed with reduced stress. All of the last minute things left to do can be divided amongst family members. Children can help with these tasks and enjoy being part of the holiday celebrations.

Tips to help accomplish tasks include:

Don't let being a perfectionist interfere with you enjoying the holidays. Family and friends are coming to visit you. Do only what you can without feeling guilty. It may be better to do deep cleaning after the holidays.

Let your fingers do the walking when purchasing last minute gifts or purchasing food for parties and meals. Call the store to make sure they have the items you need before make the trip. Make a list so you get everything you need in one trip.

Accidents are bound to happen. Clean spills up immediately. Remove stains as soon as possible. They are much easier to remove when the spot is still wet.

Keep all receipts for gifts in one place. This will save frustrations after the holidays if items need to be returned. Give gifts certificates rather than searching for the perfect gift for a hard to buy person.

Have plenty of batteries and other items you may need on-hand to save last minute stress.

If you are traveling, call for flight information or check your email before leaving for the airport. If traveling by car be sure to have an emergency/blizzard kit and be prepared if you happen to hit bad weather. Take a minute and check you have everything packed and with you before starting down the road. A checklist can help to make the task easier.

Share the duties of preparing for the holidays with family and/or friends. Family can help with cleaning, decorating and food preparation. Don't try to do it all yourself.

If you still have holiday cards to send consider sending a picture postcard. E-mail greetings are also popular. Consider other social media avenues to share photos and greetings. If you do a holiday letter jot down thoughts throughout the year you would like to share and then writing the letter will be much easier.

Prepare the table for meals the night before to save anxiety at the last minute.

Only you will know what baking, shopping or cleaning didn't get completed. Don't worry or fret. Just take time to relax and enjoy the holidays.

Ask Lorene

(This resource was updated December 2012 and appeared in the Lincoln Journal Star Newspaper Sunday edition. For information on reproducing this article or using any photographs or graphics, read the Terms of Use statement)

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