Step out of Christmas

Published on: 20th December 2017

Christmas is upon us; the airwaves beckon us to hop aboard and partake of all the joy that Christmas brings.

‘Step into Christmas…the admission is free!’ …….free admission into the festive period…what a wonderful fantasy.

If, like me you have, or do feel under pressure this season to step into the madness of present buying to meet the festive requirements, then read on.

For some people Christmas truly is a ‘wonderful time of the year’ for others it’s a very difficult time.

  • Three quarters of British people feel stressed at Christmas time…
  • A fifth wish they could better deal with the pressure they put on themselves
  • A third of people struggle finding time to look after themselves in the run up to and during the festive period (BUPA 2016)

So what about you? How can you survive the ‘jingle bell rock’ this year without falling under the weight of expectations?

I would like to invite you to come with me and  consider together how we can step into this festive season free from the potential pressure it creates, enjoy quality time with the people we choose to be with, whilst taking steps to remove ourselves from the stress, anxiety, and depression so often associated with Christmas.


Step one: STOP… Create a space between you, and the commercialism that entices us into the fantasies of Christmas.  Consider what it is you are stepping into. Ask yourself these question ‘‘what does Christmas really mean to me?’ ‘What are MY values around Christmas?’ Who/what is influencing the choices….?

Step two: STEP BACK…take a breath. Consider the true cost of Christmas on your own physical and mental health, and the ‘story’ we are telling our children.

For some people the reality of Christmas is very different to what is portrayed in the media, it can significantly contribute to an increase in stress levels, depression, anxiety, debt and relationship break-downs. So why do we do it?  My theory is ‘conditioning’ we are socially constructed to believe we can only have a good Christmas if we spends loads of money and give our children/ loved ones the latest gadgets or toys etc…

For me the true meaning of Christmas has slowly disappeared over the years. My own internal values have been hidden, covered with the sound of the media luring me into a season of additional stress and over spending.  Like so many I have ‘jumped on board’ the train of commercialism only to fall foul of its debilitating effects of stress or anxiety. I am no ‘bah humbug’ I love giving gifts and making it special for those I love and want to spend time with, but this year something has got my attention! Something made me STOP, STEP BACK and rethink what or who is influencing the choices I make.

This year, for me it is all about stepping out, not into. Stepping out of the mind-sets and conditioning that contribute to a rise in stress levels, or anxiety searching for the perfect gift, only to discover 2 months later the gifts I so lovingly bought are being offered as a raffle or tombola prize, or perhaps they have found their way to the local charity shop! Even the bin!

As a family we have decided to give ourselves permission this year to let go of the belief systems that create pressure, depleting us of the good things, in exchange for values that allows us to celebrate Christmas without fear of judgement, or giving in to the culture of materialism, the false beliefs that suggest the more we give to our children is a sign of how much we love them.

I firmly believe the greatest gift we can give our children is the gift of TIME.

TIME, that promotes freedom from cultural trappings, allowing us to enjoy freedom of mind. It’s the gift that keeps on giving, bringing peace, in exchange for anxiety.

STOP, step back, and rewrite your Christmas story allowing yourself to step into Christmas free from the beliefs you may carry that, increase your stress or anxiety levels beliefs that leave you feeling like you have somehow failed! And embrace what I believe is the greatest gift of all…TIME just to be!