The holidays are a time to be joyful and present. A time to enjoy slower mornings with kids out of school, more time spent with family and friends and creating life long memories with spur of the moment plans and outings.
For the Christian mompreneur, this can also create stress but it doesn’t have to. It is possible to have the best of both worlds during the holiday season: time to work your business, set goals and keep the momentum going as you gear up for a new year full of all the amazing plans God is working on your behalf while enjoying quality time with your family.
In this post I am going to share my best tips for surviving the holidays as a Christian mompreneur to help you balance the creative driver in you that loves to work on your passion projects and the mom who craves time to slow down and be present with those who matter most.
1. Embracing Rest
The foundation of this holiday survival guide is rest and as a busy wife, mom and entrepreneur I feel you. I whole-heartedly understand how easy it is to look at the word “rest” and want to almost chuckle at it because rest can feel so out of reach most days. There is always something to do, something to take care of, something that demands our attention but it’s important to remember that our Holy Father calls us to rest.
Repeated through scripture, rest is first mentioned in Genesis 2:2-3. These verses describe God resting on the seventh day of creation and if God felt it important to rest so should we. When we stop working and striving, we can rest in God’s presence drawing deeper into Him and trusting Him more.
When we are overworked we are more vulnerable to disobeying God. Hebrews 4:11 reminds us “strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.” The reality is that there will always be something pulling at you and demanding your attention. Rest doesn’t come naturally for most of us and why we have to be intentional, to embrace it and invite God to refresh us in those moments. So let go of feeling guilty if the dishes sit in the sink a little longer or you didn’t get to a load of laundry today.
2. Don't Change Your Schedule
The holiday season will feel less chaotic and like someone turned your life upside down if you focus on keeping your regular routine as much as possible. For me that means, God first and last so I can start my day with Him and seek guidance throughout and then end it with Him at night while ensuring I carve out moments for rest and "me" time. When your day flows as it normally does versus having your days run together like a free for all, then unexpected changes or plans don’t feel so disruptive. This will also help you easily get back to your normal routine once the holidays are over.
3. Stricter Priorities
During the holidays, only add what is necessary to your schedule. This may require you to set tighter boundaries on what you say yes to. Someone who really wants you to speak at a December luncheon may not work with your schedule while the kids are out of school. If it’s not in your best interest or that of your family, respectfully decline and schedule to be the featured speaker at the January or February luncheon.
Piling too much on your plate during the holidays will only leave you feeling weary and resentful in the long run. Before saying yes and committing yourself take some extra time to think and pray about it.
4. Smarter Scheduling
For your holidays not to stress you out with how to get enough work done while spending enough quality family time, it will require some forward thinking. For example, if the family wants to attend a local Christmas play on Thursday afternoon, go ahead and plan to spend the whole day together and plan other errands that you need to take care of while you are together and out. This allows you to focus on getting some quality work done on Monday-Wednesday so that by the time Thursday rolls around, you are feeling productive and won’t feel the least bit guilty about unplugging for the day. You may even feel so good about what you accomplished at the beginning of the week that you can check out for the rest of the week and weekend.
This approach keeps you from running around all week and feeling frazzled about not having time to work. So figure out what days each week you are planning to be out and take care of as much as you can that day (grocery and gift shopping, etc) so you aren’t chopping up every day of the week trying to run around. Keep a list on the fridge and let your family know that on the day you will be out everyone needs to take care of what they need.
5. Keep The Financial Stress Down
The holidays can not only be a time stresser but also a financial one. Look for ways you can have fun, be giving and of service to others without breaking the bank. In our family, we do a present raffle where each adult only buys one gift for another adult. A friend of mine was telling me that every year in her family the kids draw names and they set a spending limit. This allows them to buy one really nice gift for the child that their child drew a name for versus trying to buy gifts for every child. So look for ways your family can be creative and adopt some new traditions to not only keep the financial stress down but also the stress of holiday shopping in general.
6. Make It About The Kids
The holidays are a magical time for little ones and when you take the time to see it through the eyes of a child, you rediscover that magic for yourself too. It’s a time to celebrate the birth of our Savior, who came into the world to save and redeem us. It’s the greatest story ever told and greatest gift ever given.
Drive around and look at lights, find a favorite coffee shop and have hot cocoa, schedule a night to bake cookies and read the Christmas Story together as a family (Luke 2:1-20) while cuddled around a fire, have a snowball fight after a fresh snowfall, volunteer in your community that is serving the less fortunate, make ornaments for the tree, bundle up around a camp fire and make s’mores. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to make the season a meaningful one or memorable. There are tons of ideas on Pinterest for holiday family activities.
I hope these tips have encouraged you and helped you to feel more empowered about how to tackle the holidays so you can both enjoy them being present as a mom while staying productive in your business.
On behalf of myself and my family, we wish you a holiday season full of blessings.