The holidays should be the happiest time of the year, right? That doesn’t mean though that the days and weeks leading up to the holidays aren’t crazy, stressful, and overwhelming. So much to do…presents to buy, cookies to bake, and events to attend. What if you could remove the stress and add more joy to the season? Sound good? Well, you can by getting and staying organized. Here are a few tips to get you started!

Create a Holiday To-Do List

We can’t possibly remember everything that is in our heads all the time. It’s simply too much for our brains to process. Take some time and do a big old brain dump. Get everything out of you head and into a real or digital notebook. Create a list for the following categories: holiday budget, gifts to buy, recipes to gather, decorations to display, parties to attend, and wrapping supplies to purchase.

Set Deadlines

Now that you have your lists ready to go, set deadlines for each activity and if necessary, break the tasks down into smaller tasks and assign mini deadlines. For example, if you are sending holiday greeting cards, schedule a deadline to take pictures, create the card, gather stamps/return address labels, and assemble the cards and envelopes. If you are hosting a holiday, schedule deadlines to pull recipes, create a shopping list, buy all the ingredients, and finally, a time schedule for the days you will bake or cook either ahead of the holiday or the day of your holiday.

Inventory Holiday Décor and Gifts Already Purchased

Start now looking through your holiday décor and create two piles: items you still love and want to use this holiday season and items that do not bring you joy or match your current taste. Purge the items that you don’t love and use. Don’t hang out to them and store them in your home another year. Holiday décor can take up a lot of real estate in our homes. Declutter and simplify so you can find what you want easier next year. Going through this process will also help you see what you have so you don’t buy the same item again this year. Save that money and use it for something else on your holiday budget list.

This is a good time to go through your basement and closets to locate any items that you bought throughout the year and saved for a holiday gift. Did you forget about these items? Maybe you can already mark off a few people on your holiday gift-giving list!

Choose Your Priorities

We only have 24 hours a day so make your time count. This holiday season, say no more often and yes more slowly when it comes to holiday commitments. Participate in the activities that align with your goals and priorities and ultimately, the activities that you bring your and your family the most joy. Most of us want to create memories and traditions, but that’s very difficult to do when we over commit and the season becomes a blur.

Set Up a Holiday Wrapping Area

In a convenient location, set up a small folding table and a cart that contains all of your wrapping supplies. You already have all of your supplies on hand because you created a list back in Tip #1. Having a designated area to wrap means purchased gifts will have a specific “home” to go to after they are purchased and they won’t clutter up other spaces in your house. Try wrapping gifts soon after you purchase and bring them home to avoid gift wrapping overload the night before your holiday celebration.

A BONUS TIP – Take Photos of Your Decoration Setups

We couldn’t stop at just five! This last tip is genius! After you decorate for the holiday this year, take pictures of your décor. You’ll easily be able to recreate the décor next year and as a result, you’ll be more efficient in the process. Print the picture and place it in a bin with your decorations.

Were these tips helpful? What tips keep you organized during the holiday season?

We wish you and your family a happy, organized holiday season!

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