Coping with the festive season... it’s all a state of mind

Christmas dinner - turkey.
Christmas dinner - turkey.
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Less than a week to go until we’re all a few pounds lighter and a few lbs heavier. Yes, Christmas is a-coming.

If you’ve already spent an average of five hours this week trying to find the end of a roll of Sellotape, and the festive fatigue is starting to creep in, fear not. I’ve developed some tips to help see you through to the New Year.

1. Lose the novelty festive jumper.

We’ve all seen the Twitter/Instagram photos. We get it. That big, red-nosed reindeer on your chest is actually an ironic statement. It’s time to put them away for another 12 months. Men, pay particular attention. You’re in a crammed bar, perspiring like a Weight Watcher in a cake shop. How can you ever expect a kiss under the mistletoe when you’ve created a slip hazard with a pool of sweat around your feet?

2. Choose Christmas telly carefully.

If, like me, you reckon childbirth is the most unnatural phenomenon in the world and just the word ‘placenta’ has you reaching for the bucket then I do not recommend the BBC’s Call the Midwife special. Watching the contents of a downtrodden 1950s housewife spill out over bed sheets in an East End hovel does not mix well with a belly full of turkey.

3. Don’t forget the board game. In the Lynch household, nothing says ‘family Christmas’ quite like exhibiting ugly behaviour in the name of competitiveness.

We’ve had them all over the years - from Cluedo, to Catch Phrase, to Countdown. They have ended in ‘fix’ accusations and a Family Fortunes ‘err-err’ buzzer being launched at someone’s head.

Last year my sister, nine years my junior, looked set to spoil my undefeated Scrabble record. Sensing imminent defeat I threw the score sheet on the coal fire and refused to continue.

This year she’s asked for a dartboard. My God, think of the bloodshed.

4. Avoid the sales.

The only thing more infuriating than wading your way through the human cattle market formed around the sale rails is seeing the gift you paid full-whack for 48 hours ago now sporting a ‘75 per cent off’ tag.

5. Enjoy it. Winter is harsh and it would be a lot worse if we didn’t have just one day devoted to love, family and food.

Merry Christmas, folks.