Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

Don’t worry - have a happy Christmas:

Have a worry-free Christmas. It's good for your health.
By Beverly Goldsmith
Date: December 03 2013
Tags: christmas, health,
Editor Rating:

By late October, lots of Christmas goodies were appearing on the shelves of my local supermarket. When I remarked on this to a fellow shopper she said, “Don’t use the ‘C’ word. I’m worried about having enough money to buy presents for my kids. My credit card will ‘max out’ – yet again. The stress at Christmas really affects my health.”

Apparently many parents share the same feelings as that mother. A consumer credit counseling service reports that “eight out of ten people say financial difficulties are having a negative effect on their lives, jeopardising their personal relationships, health and ability to carry out their jobs”.

With that in mind, perhaps it’s time to have a worry-free Christmas - one that’s good for your health.

It would seem entirely possible to be a relaxed, happy, healthy giver and spender - to enjoy the festive season with one’s family and friends.

Be an inspired giver

Inspiration could be described as a burst of creative thinking. It’s the “Aha moment” that can help you come up with practical, stress-reducing ideas for Christmas spending. It can also lead to the moment when you’re rescued from worrying about finances and gift-giving.

One early December morning, I woke-up totally stressed out over Christmas shopping. A fresh approach – a new attitude to gift-buying was needed. I spent some moments in calm contemplation. Then, with pen in hand, I waited patiently for a flash of inspiration. Ideas flowed. Looking at what I’d written down, I felt mentally energised. I was able to happily gift shop, and I’ve continued to do so.


  • Spend some quiet time getting inspired about what to buy for family members.
  • Think more about individual likes and needs before rushing to the stores, or clicking the mouse button.
  • Put more thought into gift-selection, rather than relying on impulse-buying. 
  • Stay calm, serene.
  • Don’t feel pressured to get the shopping done.

Give from the heart – not just from the wallet.

An inspired gift doesn’t have to cost ‘big bucks’. It’s not the price tag that denotes a truly worthy present. Giving something special to the person you care about, should be the result of loving thoughtfulness - not simply spending lots of cash.  

My grandmother and her siblings used to receive an orange for Christmas. This may seem unusual. Yet, if you celebrated Christmas in the wintry depths of Scotland, as they did, a summer orange would actually be a very special treat.


  • Give from the heart. Be prompted by good motives. 
  • Take the time to purchase a meaningful and thoughtful gift.
  • Don’t be competitive and think you have to buy the biggest or most expensive present.
  • Don’t get something just to impress your kids or loved-ones. It’s the “love-factor” that’s significant - not how much you spend. 

Be love-motivated

For many people, this time of year is traditionally considered to be about love, peace and good will to men. This could be why many families place love at the top of their Christmas wish-list.

From the youngest to the oldest person in a community, there’s a yearning for that tender expression of heart-felt love which Christmas often inspires in people. Such love is more than words on a card. It’s the active, caring kind that can ultimately lead to a love-filled, happy Christmas.


  • Spend extra time with your kids, or those you love.
  • Show someone you care. Cook a meal, offer to do gardening, or run an errand.  
  • Resist being stressed out or financially burdened-down with preparations for the festive season.
  • Be an unhurried friend, unharried shopper, unruffled neighbour, and an unflustered family member.
  • Remember, it’s possible to be worry-free, and to stay healthy and well this Christmas.  
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Recent Comments
14 Total Comments
Deb says: 2013 12 03

Great advice, thank you.  Christmas should be about more than the stress of presents and cooking.  We gave up buying presents some years back and make modest donations to charities on behalf of family members instead.  This has really allowed us to focus on the real meaning of Christmas and to just enjoy being with family.

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 04

Thanks Deb for your comment. What a great idea. No doubt it came from inspiration. Have a joyous Chritsmas with your family.

Jane says: 2013 12 03

Thank you so much for the wonderful tips…very inspirational!

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 04

Thanks Jane for your comment. So glad you found the tips inspiring. I feel sure you will have a splendid Christmas Season.

Simon says: 2013 12 03

Beverly, I love these tips but I particularly like: Be an unhurried friend, unharried shopper, unruffled neighbour, and an unflustered family member.

In other words be an example to others that it is possible.

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 04

Thanks Simon for your comment. So glad you liked the tips. I feel sure that you will be a glowing example of Christmas calm and enjoy a healthy festive time.

Marion says: 2013 12 04

What excellent advice Beverly. I no longer get in a stew over Christmas. I remind myself it is about peace and joy and love. It is not all about food and overspending on gifts.

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 04

Thanks Marion for your comment. So glad to hear that you stay calm and relaxed about the festive season. I agree with you that Christmas is all about peace, joy and love. This makes for a happy, healthy Christmas time.

susan johnson says: 2013 12 04

This is a beautiful article Beverly. It effortlessly covers all those areas which tend to overwhelm us needlessly at Christmas. I have often thought it is sad that so much lurid advertising and repetitive jingles seem to herald Christmas rather than the spiritual winding down which should take place. Your suggestions are really important as they encourage us to overlook the superficial merriment and really take part in the Christmas we all deserve.

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 05

Thank you Susan for your comment. I am really pleased that you liked the article. I am sure that you will take part in a Christmas Day with your family that will memorable and full of love.

susan johnson says: 2013 12 04

As I wrote my last comment, a family member reminded me that we all, as a family, in amongst the usual presents, tend to give to charities in the name of family and friends who we know will appreciate that more than a transient gift. I have asked for this to be done for me on Christmas and Birthdays and those who accept my idea have willingly donated the money they would have spent on my gift to my favourite charities. I really do think this idea is growing rapidly and it seems to me these gifts embody the idea of genuine giving.

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 05

Thank you Susan again for your comment. It is good to know that you and your family have that tradition of giving to a charity rather than to each other. It is an inspired idea that blesses others. May your Christmas be a bright and happy one.

Gordon Renouf says: 2013 12 06

Good advice, and there are many ways to act on it.

If you want to “Take the time to purchase a meaningful and thoughtful gift.” as recommended above then you could do worse than look at - a free service from Ethical Consumers Australia. As well as listing hundreds of gift ideas good for the planet, people and animals, you can get free personalised gift advice - for example to help you find the right gift for a difficult to buy for person.
Disclosure - I’m volunteering with this organisation.
Happy holidays

Beverly Goldsmith says: 2013 12 08

Thank you Gordon. Another inspired idea for making Christmas happy and healthy.

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