Escaping The Pressures of the Holidays

10 Dec

By Veronica M. Benson

Tis the Season to be Jolly!


Is it really?  The holiday excitement usually starts a little before Thanksgiving and if not then, you’re immersed into it Thanksgiving day. If not at Thanksgiving with the last minute grocery store visits, dinner hosting and guests arrivals, there’s no escaping it for all the pandemonium surrounding “Black Friday.” If that’s not enough, the weekend passes and if you think you’ll be able to start the following  work week in peace,  “Cyber Monday” is waiting right there for you. I’ve come to the conclusion that no matter what you say and what you do, you will fall victim to the deals that are being advertised and dished out to you in a way that you can’t resist. You may not buy the biggest item on the list but you’ll definitely buy something.


Unless we all have won the lottery, struck it rich or are heirs and heiresses to millionaires’ fortunes, the reality with spending remains. That we can’t get everything we see and think we would like to have. In my experience with advertising and in my research and findings I discovered, if you get close enough to some of the things that are popular that you think you want, you’ll do one of 3 things. 1.) Buy the very item you want, no matter the cost at a sacrifice in not getting something else. 2.) Find another product similar to the one you want and at a reasonable price then still have money for other shopping or 3.) Realize that the product you want is not something you’re interested in at all and contently continue on with your Christmas shopping without it.

While holiday shopping can be an adventurous and fulfilling part of enjoying the season, there is much more offered that is easily overlooked that you won’t necessarily find in the aisles of your favorite store.


1. Take a break and pull away from social media. Immerse yourself in real life & see how WONDERFUL and MAGICAL the Christmas holiday is.

2.Get involved in volunteering, at homeless shelters, disadvantaged children’s organizations & food pantries that give back to people.  It’s a great gift to do for others. The Holiday is a good time to start.

3. Advertisements can make you want everything you see. Go through some of the things from last Christmas, ( & this might be a good idea to do with your children) There may be some things you have never touched. And for your children, toys that they’ve not yet played with.

4. With children, changing their rooms around with organization can make these toys more appealing present tense. Yes it’s Christmas, so naturally, children are going to want more. For the toys they don’t want or no longer play with and are in good condition, have them donate them to children who need them. (Kids will find this rewarding for themselves).

5. Love is the greatest gift to get wrapped up in during the holiday season. Find your own energy and be comfortable in it. Discover and enjoy the simple things that are available to you.

6. Get cozy and all snuggled up with covers & movies on the couch. Watching holiday classics such as: The Christmas Story, Prancer (a favorite of mine), Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is coming to town, The Santa Claus and more. Kids love this! Add snacks and hot chocolate. Just don’t forget the whipped cream.

7. You can follow tradition or, start something NEW!

8. The work that comes with children getting new toys and technology, whether from parents as a gift or from Santa, is to teach them to take care of it and appreciate it. (Make sure that everything a child gets is helping to advance them.)

9. Apple is likely to come out with a new product every year. It’s not necessary to get each one. They probably all do the same things.

10. Christmas is only one day out of 365 in a year. Don’t lose your mind for one day when there are so many other days that you can save that for.

11. Partake in the free moments of the holiday season. Like seeing the Christmas tree being lit downtown, Zoo lights festival, admiring decorations around the neighborhood and playing in the snow if it falls in time.

12. Be extremely prayerful. Jesus is the reason for the season. Even though it’s evolved to many other concepts, it’s important to remember this.

13. The world has nothing to do with how things are done in your family and home. Don’t feel like you’re missing out by not keeping up with everything and everyone.

14. Enjoy and inhale, each & every day of the holiday season. You don’t have to do something extravagant every day, but make it memorable + magical your own way.

15. You may not go out Christmas caroling but sing Christmas songs with your children. It’s fun watching them learn the words to the songs.

16. Tis the season to not be too far from God. The realness, holiness in the spirit of God. Not false substitutes. But God himself.  There is nothing else like it!

17. Do not ruin other’s  holiday traditions based on your own belief and traditions.  Do what you would in your household without interfering with another’s. (Especially for those who don’t believe in Santa!) The spirit of Christmas affects us differently. We all celebrate it differently in some way. *

Be grateful for what you do have, especially if health is one of those things!


Have a Safe and Blessed Holiday Season!!!



Veronica M. Benson for Ve Michelle Writing Communications ©2013

Photography by Veronica M. Benson


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