Why not change the habits of a lifetime and actually enjoy Christmas this year? Let’s relax and approach the festive season with a stress free attitude that means you might actually have fun. What a concept!

For too long, we have become slaves to the whole Christmas machine – there is so much pressure on everybody to conform to ridiculous stereotypes about how and what Christmas should be. What if I don’t want to follow the pack? Maybe I’d like to enjoy an alternative festive break, one with less stress and more fun. Here are some tips for celebrating Christmas in a way which means when you come out the other side on Boxing Day, you’ll still have a little sanity left…

Easy Gifts

Forget slogging it out on the high street, shopping online is the easy option. Order nice and early so that gifts arrive in time for the 25th. What could be easier than sitting in your pyjamas shopping online – much less exhausting and you’ll probably save money too. If you want to save time, why not purchase tokens as gifts? Perhaps lacking the personal touch a little, at least it means the recipient gets something they actually want.

Easy Festive Meals

Going to a hotel for Christmas lunch makes an inspired choice. Avoid all that hot work slaving away in the kitchen, no washing up and the food will be delicious. Just sit back and allow someone else to take the Christmas strain for once. Hotels are often lovely places for festive occasions and the atmosphere can be charming.

Engineer an invitation to somebody else’s house for Christmas Day. Going to friends or relatives will lighten the load considerably. Of course, you should offer to help and contribute to the day’s celebrations, but enjoying it on foreign turf is definitely less of a responsibility. Just think, you won’t have the perennial problem of thinking up a fantastic new recipe for left over turkey…

If you want to take it even easier, why not book yourself onto a Christmas cruise? The crew on board take care of everything from putting up the decorations, cooking the food, serving the drinks and the entertainment afterwards – it’s hard to imagine an easier Christmas holiday.

Pick Your Parties

The parties start any time from the end of November and continue right up to Christmas Eve. If you don’t have the stamina to tolerate this kind of relentless socialising, then be picky about which parties you attend. Invitations to formal functions can be a real bore, so only go to the ones that really appeal. Go easy on the alcohol or you will burn out really early. December hangovers can be real stinkers. If you are a smoker, this is the time of year you will be made to feel a pariah. At parties, consider trying the new trend of hookah pens; they are similar to electronic cigarettes but contain zero nicotine. Smoking is rightly frowned upon in many  places, so why not try vaping on a hookah pen? Coming in fresh fruity flavours, vaping is the new smoking –  and with none of the health issues associated with smoking tobacco, hookah pens are likely to be seen all over the place this Christmas.

Walk It Off

Your body and mind is under continuous assault in the festive season. Consuming highly calorific meals and overloading on alcohol can really take its toll after a while. Make a conscious effort to reduce the amount you eat. Stop at just one mince pie. Forgo that extra slice of Christmas cake. Refuse another glass of punch.  Instead of collapsing on the sofa in front of Dr Who after Christmas lunch, why not do yourself a favour? Take some gentle exercise. Your metabolism and digestion is likely to be sluggish after all the excesses of Christmas and the effects of a brisk walk can be invigorating.

Another major benefit of taking a walk or other exercise around Christmas, is that it gives you a break from being in close proximity to others. It is no secret that family rows increase over Christmas – January is the peak time for people to contact divorce lawyers. Pre-empt problems by grabbing some time out in the fresh air, walking the dog or simply taking a turn around the block – it will really help reduce your stress levels.

So, there are a few tips for enjoying an easier Christmas this year. If you plan it well in advance and make sure you have told everyone that things will be different this year, there’s no reason Christmas shouldn’t be a relaxing and successful wind down, rather than melt down…

Author Bio: Chris Jenkinson is a marketing consultant writing and working for the Hookah Pen Shop a retailer of hookah pens.

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Why not change the habits of a lifetime and actually enjoy Christmas this year? Let's relax and approach the festive season with a stress free attitude that means you might actually have fun. What a concept! For too long, we have become slaves to the whole Christmas machine – there...