“A lot of women don’t enjoy Christmas because they’re so busy making it fabulous for everyone else. Women can get very stressed over Christmas – to the extent of experiencing murderous rage. That’s because when you kill yourself with effort you lose all sense of perspective, along with all the fun, joy and happiness. It’s a problem.”

stella O’Malley, Psychotherapst

Dear Daughters,

I think the quote above and the essay below says it all!

7 Creative Christmas Crutches For Women Who Do Too Much

The Christmas crescendo is upon us. Can you hear the cymbals crashing? A cacophony of feasting, drinking, gifting, singing, feasting, gifting, drinking, feasting, feasting... All the while we’re running here, running there, running, running everywhere. 

How do we make it through with tempers intact? How do we prevent those oh, so ugly Christmas meltdowns? The usual stress relievers--wine and chocolate? 

Alas, no.  Wine and chocolate's superpowers are sadly diminished this time of year, and (please don’t hurt me), the case COULD be made that these trusty sidekicks might even exacerbate holiday stress. 

Nope. I believe that these last desperate days of Christmas call for new, exciting, braver remedies...like the ones below.

1. Create a positive mantra and chant it frequently. 
You can borrow mine if you want. Christmas is about Love. So am I. Christmas is about LOVE. SO...AM I! During peak times of discord and mayhem you may find yourself bellowing it at the top of your lungs to convince yourself and others. That’s okay. Keep saying it. 

2. Stage an impromptu and highly dramatic oral recital of The Night Before Christmas in the middle of a crowd. 
I like the grocery store. Whip out a tambourine and bang it for emphasis between stanzas. You’ll be surprised at how many people will join in, or applaud, or laugh, or give you money to stop. 

3. Carry stress-relieving sniffers in your purse. 
My favorites include: Eau de Make It Stop, Eau de Help Me, Eau de Beach Far, Far Away. When you feel a freak-out coming on, pull out the appropriate vial(s) and inhale deeply. Repeat as needed.
4. Shake jingle bells to drown out annoying people. 
Jingle bells are a girl’s best friend during the holidays. Use them to entertain a bored toddler or better yet, to combat an irritating person who won’t shut their trap. When confronted by intolerable yammering, dig them out of your purse and give an obnoxious shake right in the offender’s face, while shouting, "What? Can't hear you!” Every time they attempt to speak, do it again. And again. Eventually this musical defensive move will tick them off, and THAT will generate good cheer for you! 

5. Make up seasonal curse words and phrases that are not naughty. 
Fun, family friendly and holiday appropriate, what’s not to like? Make sure to pronounce these holiday gems using a strong and forceful tone. For example, I like Rotten Reindeers! Nog! Nog! Nog! Holy Holly! and Yuletide Yacker! No, you can’t use mine. I’m sure you can think up your own. 

6. Get a Dammit Doll and use it.
Yes, a Dammit doll is a real, trademarked item. Check Amazon if you don’t believe me. As much as you sometimes fantasize about it, you don’t really want to pummel the kids, your spouse, the carolers, Santa, your mother-in law, the Christmas tree.... Good news! Your Dammit Doll is built to absorb your Christmas rage. It too, fits nicely in your purse. This is a much more interesting option than pulling out your flask.

7. Write a Bad Christmas Letter. 
Vent on paper every anti-Christmas rant and rave, bitch and moan, whine and snivel you harbor in your heart. Encourage your girlfriends to write a Bad Christmas Letter too. Then arrange a girls’ gathering aka Christmas Stress Support Group and take turns reading them out loud. Laugh. Cry. Scream. Then, burn all the letters at the end of night and solemnly swear to never ever share the contents. A blood vow is recommended. 

These last desperate days of Christmas. The fury, the frenzy, the food. Make it through minus a major breakdown by using these creative, and might I add, LOL inducing strategies. After all, healthy laughter (vs evil or insane) is the best coping mechanism of all.

Merry Christmas!!!

From Momma Grinch, a short sassy guide to stopping the holiday madness

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