How to Overcome ADHD Christmas Overwhelm

 In ADHD Symptom Control

ADHD Christmas OverwhelmIs ADHD Christmas overwhelm setting in yet? I used to dread Christmas for that very reason. Our lives are usually in overwhelm before the holidays hit. Hanging by our fingernails to get stuff done. Sound about right?

Then the holidays arrive. A host of merry (and not-so-merry) activities jingle their way into our already bursting lives. It can be incredibly overwhelming!

What Causes ADHD Christmas Overwhelm?

All those extra decisions can be excruciating for adults with ADHD. Decision paralysis smacks us. Who to add to our gift list? What gifts to get? What parties to attend? What treats to cook? Deciphering our budget. (And, of course, going over budget which adds to our ADHD Christmas overwhelm.)

Christmas then becomes a cluster of problems. Especially when we compare ourselves to others without ADHD. We envy all the beautifully decorated homes. And, why can other people manage to send Christmas cards on time?

No wonder we start feeling overwhelmed by everything we want to get done! Some of my clients love this time of year and all the extras. But for most of us, Christmas is just plain hard.

Simplify Your Season

Here’s what I’ve learned to overcome ADHD Christmas overwhelm:

1)    Rethink Gifts: As a family, we focus more on memories. One year I gave my husband and daughter a skydiving trip. Another time I gave my husband the gift of a getaway for us stay on the coast not too far from our house. We still treasure these memories.

2)    Reassess Christmas Cards: I stopped writing Christmas cards years ago. I also decided I’m not going to feel guilty about it. Because writing Christmas cards was something I procrastinated on every year. I held it over my head, and it made Christmas a nightmare. Yes, I’d love to be in contact with all these people I adore. But if they love me, they’re going to love me whether they get a Christmas card or not.

3)    Make Shopping Easier: Successful Christmas shopping for me means I don’t step foot in the mall. I like to shop at smaller stores nearby. I’m helping local businesses, and I find the most interesting things there! And, of course, online. (One ADHD Success reader is giving her sister my Organized for Life! Book bundle for Christmas.)

4)    Limit Decorations: Many of us with ADHD struggle to stay organized. Clutter actually confuses and overwhelms us. All the extra holiday decorations adds to the clutter. I keep my decorations very minimal. As I pull decorations out, I stash photos and knick knacks in the Christmas decorations bins. That way I’m not adding Christmas decorations to the stuff that’s up all year long.

How can you avoid ADHD Christmas overwhelm this year? Simplify. Have clear ideas about what you want to do and what you don’t want. Drop the things on your list that don’t improve your spirit. Then focus on the things that make you happy. May you enjoy a Merry, and overwhelm-free, Christmas season this year!

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