Holidays Vs. Routine

There are too many holidays at the end of the year very close together. It’s like whoever was in charge of scheduling holidays had ADHD and waited until the last minute to throw them all in at the end of the year. All these holidays can stress people out and make things seem overwhelming. There’s a lot of extra commitments, things to do, shifting work schedules, changes in weather, and general obligations. Prepping for the holidays can sometimes feel like a full-time job. If you’ve been feeling a little off balance, overwhelmed, having a hard time focusing or sticking to your routines- that’s okay. There’s a lot of non-routine factors trying to throw off your groove. ADHD symptoms can feel more apparent when there’s a sudden shift in expectations, plans, or short-term obligations.

Be patient and nice to yourself. Check in to see what you need- if anything is missing. You are one person, do what one person can do.

Ask yourself, and break down for yourself (however you like to see information presented):

What do you need to do? When does it need to be done by? How long will it take? Seeing this, is there a priority order, or apparent order of operations to do these things? What is in my control and what is out of my control? How do I make peace with this balance?

What tasks need to get done that are off-routine? Is there anything on your shopping list that normally isn’t there that you need to remember? Is there a different store to go to? A different time to go to these places? How important is it?

What help can I ask for? Does everything that needs to get done have to be done by myself alone? Am I trying too hard to meet other people’s expectations when they are not trying to meet mine? How one-sided are the obligations, and how okay am I with this dynamic? What would it take to be okay?

How do you know when you’re starting to get burnt out or overwhelmed? What can you do to practice self-care in these moments? A candle that burns twice as bright burns half as long. How much stamina do you have before you need to rest? When you are resting to take care of yourself, remember that you aren’t just “doing nothing”, you are taking care of yourself and that active task may appear passive to an onlooker.

It’s the end of a year that looked like nothing any of us expected or planned for. There was- and is- a lot to adapt to and overcome. Even a small step forward to where you want to go is still a step forward. Staying in place is still not backwards progress. Take time and treat yourself kindly, however that may look to you. Stay safe, have all the happy holidays, and be proud that we made it this far.

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