Let’s face it – the holidays can be a crazy time. We may joke about venturing into the holiday hustle, but in reality, we all need more help during the holidays. The holidays are full of family, fun, and excitement but that translates to longer to-do lists, special meals to make, people to entertain, gifts to choose from, and money to spend. Whew! Just thinking about all of that can be intimidating and overwhelming! Having a supportive and encouraging partner is important all year round but that need is amplified during times of increased stress and demands…like the holidays.
When the hustle and bustle set in, we might find ourselves barking orders in frustration. We may think, “I can do this better, faster, and easier if I just do it myself.” While this may be some truth in this line of thinking, shouldering the load will wear us down.
It’s important to ask for help in a productive way, but that’s not always an easy thing to do. People struggle to ask for what they need for lots of different reasons. Some fear being told no, being judged, or being rejected. Some people feel guilty or ashamed if they have to ask for help. Others are people pleasers and feel the need to “be perfect” and have it all together.
Women report more stress during holidays than men and tend to feel like most of the pressure falls on them to plan and prepare for festivities. Regardless of your gender or the pressures you feel – everybody needs something. Tell yourself you deserve to enjoy the holidays too and it’s okay to ask for what you need. Here are four common things people need more of during the holidays…and how to ask for them.
Four Things to Ask For During The Holiday Hustle
I need help.
There’s simply more to do during the holidays. There is still work, kids, chores, errands, and life demands in addition to holiday decorating, entertaining, shopping and planning. No one can do all of that alone. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner for help. Decide which things you can let go of and allow them to help you with those things. You’ll be less stressed and feel closer when you operate as a team.
I need some time by myself.
We all need a break. Whether your thing is running, yoga, TV, sports, reading, or spending time with friends – you need time to do the things you enjoy. It’s okay to check out for a bit, your to-do list can wait. Chances are if you make time for yourself to recharge, you’ll approach your tasks with renewed energy and a clear mind.
I need support.
Stress of any kind can wear on your ability to effectively manage your emotions. The more stressed you are, the less tolerance, grace, and patience you have. We all need support and sometimes we need it more than other times. If this is one of those times for you, reach out to your partner. It can be helpful to say, “I’m stressed right now. Would you mind sitting and talking with me, hugging me, reassuring me, etc?” Be clear and specific in what you ask for, don’t leave them to guess.
I need some alone time with you.
Whether you and your partner are carrying the weight of holiday stress, it can wear down your relationship and leave you feeling lonely. It’s important to make time to connect with your mate all year round but it is more difficult to make time when life is hectic (ahem…during the holidays). Make a plan to spend some intentional time together – schedule a few date nights to get you through the holidays, and take 10-15 min at the beginning or end of each day to have coffee or hot chocolate and check in with each other. Plan to get away for a night or plan a romantic vacation together to unwind after the holidays. Our Luxe Couples Retreat may be the perfect option to destress after the holidays and recharge your relationship.
There is so much to see and do during the holidays. It’s no wonder people find it to be one of the more stressful times of the year – but it doesn’t have to be. Whether you’re a planner or just get caught up in the moment, take some time to consider what would be helpful to you. Write those things down; then go ahead and ask. Research also shows that people tend to underestimate others’ willingness to help. This means people want to help you but you’re unlikely to get the help you need if you don’t ask! Ask for help during the holidays and enjoy the holiday hustle this year!
If you find that you tend to struggle throughout the year with being assertive about your wants and needs, our team of therapists would love to help you find your voice and get your needs met. If you’re ready to get started, click here to schedule your appointment today.
You might also enjoy reading our blog, How Being Assertive is Good for You.