It’s the most wonderful time of the year… if by ‘most wonderful’ you also mean super crazy stressful and everything tends to fall in you lap. Sometimes you even wonder what would happen if you just went on a Christmas strike…
But you won’t, because it really is magical and amazing and you do love it…
This is why if you plan early and use these tips to help you get organized for Christmas, you can offset some of that stress and really focus on what is important to you.
Better still, you can use the free planner I created specifically for the month of December and for Christmas, to help you get organized, stay on top of things, and have a less stressful, more enjoyable Christmas.
1 – Start Planning Now
The best time to start planning was yesterday, the second-best time is now.
Whether it’s June 27th, December 1st, or December 24th… it’s not too late to start getting organized for Christmas.
Even if you have left this until the very last minute, writing everything down and getting all of those thoughts in your head into some form of organized list structure is going to help combat that feeling of overwhelm sooo much.
And if you’re ahead of the game and getting yourself ready well before the big day, then using something like our planner will help you to keep track of everything and plan out what needs to be done and when.
2 – Get Those Presents Early
Whether it’s online or in store, getting your presents early will save you so much stress (and time) later on.
Creating a list of present ideas throughout the year can be super helpful for this. On any given day I can pick about 10 things to get my kids that I know they’ll love, but for some reason, as soon as it comes time to gift shop for them, my mind goes blank.
If you can, buy your Christmas presents throughout the year when you see them, when there’s big sales, or just to be that little bit more organized.
Even if you can’t do this, do try to get in as early as you can for Christmas presents.
There’s nothing more stressful than having in your mind what you want to buy then not being able to get it when the time comes and having to run around last minute trying to find a gift that will be loved.
Hot Tip – Wrap the presents and add tags to them as you go! This will mean you don’t have to spend hours wrapping all at once.
3 – Get Your Wrapping Paper and Supplies Early
This is a tip that I use every Christmas. Get your wrapping paper and supplies early, then you won’t risk not being able to get it again when it comes time for gift wrapping.
I love the look of the presents wrapped cohesively, whether it’s in colored or patterned paper, or monotone paper with accents, it’s all just so festive and so beautiful.
Rather than wait until Christmas gets closer to wrap all my presents, I get my wrapping paper and any tags or stickers I see as soon as Christmas supplies start hitting the shelves.
This means I get the pick of the prettiest wrapping paper instead of having to desperately search for a roll right before Christmas when all that’s left is the damaged fluro green paper.
You can also find cute ribbons and decorative supplies throughout the year and keep them in a ‘Christmas Box’.
Keeping all of your wrapping paper and supplies together will make it a lot easier when you want to wrap your presents as you go, or if you’re the kind of person who loves a good wrapping session, this will keep everything together for you too.
4 – Get Your Cards and Letters Organized Now
I’ve lost track of the number of years I’ve gone to get my cards organized but it’s the week before Christmas and they’re never going to arrive on time.
If you’re like me and have these grand ideas of what you want Christmas to look like, but lack the follow through, then having a planner like the one available for free here, is going to save your sanity and help you to actually have the Christmas you want.
Get in early with your cards AND with your kids letters to Santa too!
Many places offer to send replies from Santa to your kids as well (so magical) but you have to get in early.
Set aside some time with your kids so they can do their letters to Santa and you can do your Christmas cards to family and friends at the same time. (While eating Christmas cookies and listening to Christmas music… of course).
5 – Choose Your Traditions And Don’t Worry About Perfection
There are so many Christmas traditions to choose from, and we have more than we could possibly do every year.
From baking Christmas cookies, to attending live Christmas Carols concerts, to driving around looking at Christmas lights, and binge watching Christmas movies… it’s all fun and festive but if you try to do it all, it becomes a bit too much.
We all want to give our kids the most magical and memorable Christmas, but trying to do it all is just going to lead to burnout.
Choose the traditions you want to follow and don’t worry about perfection.
Slightly burnt cookies makes for a funny story later on… everything that happens is part of your story and it’s perfect just the way it is. Enjoy the moments.
6 – Schedule In Downtime For Yourself
Christmas is an exciting time, but with the excitement comes a lot of running around doing things for other people.
It’s hard to squeeze in enough downtime during the Christmas season to recharge your batteries, but it’s essential you do.
If time feels like it’s flying by and you’re not getting enough sleep or putting yourself last on the list, then it’s time to adjust your schedule so you can do what you need to do take care of yourself.
Take a break from social media, go for a walk in your local park or forest so you can get some fresh air and take some space for yourself.
The more you recharge your batteries the better you’ll feel and the more you’ll be able to enjoy Christmas time.
Use the planner above to schedule in downtime and make sure it’s as much of a priority as all the other tasks you have (or even a higher priority!!).
7 – Delegate Tasks To Others
There’s no doubt about it, Christmas and the whole holiday season is just busier than usual. There are more events, more tasks to do, and more things we want to do.
But this doesn’t mean you have to do it all yourself.
Say that again for me… because I know you’re going to try and do as much as you can.. but that’s how we make a beeline for burnout.
Instead, delegate some tasks to others.
If you’re hosting Christmas, get someone to grocery shop for you, or make a dish, or be in charge of drinks… something.
Have a look at all the tasks on your to do list and ask yourself, truthfully, if YOU are the one who needs to do them.
Anything that is a ‘mmm not really’ is a task to delegate to someone else.
8 – Stocktake Your Supplies
This is something you might easily skim over, but I promise it’s worth the few minutes it takes to do…
You might think you know how many napkins you have folded away or how much sticky tape you’ve got stashed… somewhere… but when you’re setting up for Christmas lunch, or wrapping presents on Christmas Eve, the last thing you’ll want is to realize you’ve run out of something.
Have a look at all the things you’ll need to prepare for Christmas and take a quick stocktake of what you have. A little time now will save you so much hassle later on.
9 – Plan Your Space
Before you start decorating or planning your magical Christmas Day, take some time to plan your space.
Figure out what is going to go where, where’s the Christmas Tree going? The decorations? Where is everyone going to sit? Do you need to rearrange furniture?
Sometimes it can help to map it all out in advance and draw out where everything is going to go.
This is also super helpful for when you recruit others to help you set things up as you can show them exactly where everything is meant to go.
10 – Plan Your Day
There’s a lot that goes into a Christmas day… a lot of moving parts, a lot of people, a lot of things happening… and without a plan it can all be chaos.
Take some time to plan out your day.
Do you actually have time to do everything you want to do?
What’s the timeline of the day going to look like? How does it all fit in with everyone else’s plans?
While creating a plan helps you get organized for Christmas, it’s also incredibly important to make sure that you don’t get so stuck on the plan that you’re not flexible in going with the flow of the day.
Which leads us to…
11 – Remember To Prioritize What Is Important
We all know the fun and festivities of Christmas, the traditions, the excitement, the decorations, the presents…
But sometimes it’s easy to get so caught up in all of these things that we forget what is important and why we do all of this in the first place.
Regardless of religion, take some time to reflect on what Christmas means for you.
It might be that you want your kids to feel the magic you felt when you were a child, or that you get to spend time sharing a meal with your family, or that you get to cook a beautiful banquet for everyone.
Taking time to work out what is important to you can help you make these things a priority and help you to gain some perspective when everything feels like it’s getting out of hand or overwhelming.
Above all else, remember that Christmas is fun and magical, it is for YOU to enjoy just as much as everyone else, and it doesn’t need to be perfect to be perfectly memorable and amazing.