What is your biggest challenge over the Christmas period?

Is it keeping the family happy?

Is it entertaining your guests?

Is it organising different activities?

Or is it getting that much needed break from your demanding and hectic life?

Guest Blog by Dr Mariette Jansen, Dr Destress.

Looking after others

Christmas is usually a demanding time for the, dare I say it, females in the household. In over 80% of the families it is the wife and mum who take responsibility for a smooth holiday. Focussing on everybody else’s needs and trying to create a great time, which is stressful.


No routine

What makes it stressful is that the regular routine has disappeared and it is double hard to be efficient when routine is lacking.


No structure affects discipline

Without a structure, you are floating and that makes it really hard to be disciplined. Days fly by and with such a strong focus on other people; you forget to look after yourself.


The aftermath

Once the holiday season is over you can look back with satisfaction or frustration at the results of your hard work: who had a good time, who were disappointed, what could be done different next year?


Then normal life returns.

You pick up the pieces, start finding time for you – at last -, go back to routines and structure to repair the damage to yourself. Let me guess. You are exhausted, because you ran around all the time. You are not as fit as you were before, because running, yoga and other exercise had stopped and the pounds have happily jumped onto your hips.


What could you do differently this year?

The most important gift you can give yourself this year is not to give up on your routines and make a plan. It prevents you becoming a victim of circumstances and not being in charge of what is happening.


What is important to you?

Exercise or a hobby – plan ahead on which days you can do what. Of course, it will not be the same as in normal times, but set yourself goals, such as 10.000 steps a day or one yoga class a week or go to your choir at least once.

Delegate – do you need to do everything or are there tasks you can delegate? Ask your guests to bring desert and cheese, order wine and drinks online etc

Plan your food – at this time of the year Christmas is often the excuse to let loose and pile on the weight. However, December only has three (the UK) and four (US) party days. The other twenty something are regular days where you can control your food intake.

Take time-out for you – Create time for you, you need it. And make sure you respect your choices, so you can demand from your family to respect those as well. Maybe go out for a two hour coffee break with a friend or have a bath.


Make December 2017 different. Look as well after yourself as after others and when January arrives you don’t have to drag yourself out of the ditch. It only requires some planning and discipline to stick to it.


‘He, who fails to plan, plans to fail.’ Winston Churchill


Want some help in creating time for you? Download this free ebook from Dr Mariette Jansen


Dr Mariette Jansen is my partner in the online 3 week programme ‘The Successful Mind-set to Eatwright’; a plan to create the foundation for a successful journey to a slimmer and healthier you. It’s not a diet; it’s a mind set and a healthy way of eating. For only £42 you can get yourself in tip top shape for the festive season. Find out more HERE

Enjoy the festive season.

To better health

Leonie x