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Holiday Hacks to Ensure Peace 

Christmas holiday background featuring 2 decorative candles, stars and lights on a wooden surface.

Holiday Hacks to Ensure Peace 

“Peace is a journey of a thousand miles, and it must be taken one step at a time.”

~Lyndon B. Johnson

The holidays are supposed to be a time of celebration, of joy, and of peace. But, for many it is a stressful time. There is so much to do, such as putting up decorations, shopping and wrapping gifts, cooking, and attending social events. It can be especially stressful for those of us who cannot see or who cannot see well. Creating and maintaining organization systems can help us maintain our sanity and actually enjoy the magic of this beautiful season. 

Here are a few hacks to keep you happy!

Get organized

Holiday to do list written on lined paper in red and green marker sitting under a lamp on a wooden table.

If you are anything like me, you know you need to get more organized. It is amazing how much time and energy we waste looking for things… which causes a lot of frustration too! Organization is helpful to everyone, but it is especially critical to those who have visual impairments. We need to put things in places where we know they are and where they can be easily accessed. This might mean de-cluttering, but I promise you will experience much less stress if you can get organized. Of course, you will need to ask those who live with you to join this organization movement too.

I like stuff… which anyone who knows me knows about me. I have a lot of clothes, shoes, kitchen items, and well stuff. But, I regularly work on organizing it all and getting rid of stuff I am no longer using. I just know this opens space for more stuff…which means more organizing. If you like to have a lot of stuff, then you really have to work on being organized. If you can get rid of stuff and keep it simple I applaud you, as it certainly makes things easier.  

Everything should have a designated place that makes sense to those using the item, and it needs to get put back after it has been used!

Learn to label 

Label is spelled outin red and green letters on wooden blocks.

The holidays often bring with them boxes, bins, containers, and more. I literally have a very big closet stacked to the top with Christmas decorations, including two Christmas trees… and I am contemplating getting another tree! Prior to labelling I spent hours searching through boxes, bins, and containers to find what I needed… yes, this tip goes with the organization too.

Labelling has helped me significantly as I have lost more and more of my sight. I started with large print labels, on boxes of Christmas decorations, spices, etc., and today I use tactile or Braille labels. I can now lay my hands on most anything quickly and know what it is. Go ahead, try to get things labelled once you have it organized.

Keep it simple

Creative minimalist Christmas theme image of a red ribbon shaped like a Christmas tree.

My best tip for maintaining your peace during this busy holiday season is to keep it simple. Make a decision about what you plan to do, set up a schedule for yourself, take one step at a time, and keep it simple. It is okay to say no, not this year, or even I can’t. 

Ask for help  

Ask for help reminder note next to a cup of coffee and a pair of eyeglasses.

Most of us do not like to ask for help. I am finding that the older and wiser I get the more willing and even eager I am to ask for help. I have also discovered people love helping me out, and that I have many ways I can reciprocate. Instead of getting frustrated, feeling sorry for yourself, or getting mad I urge you to ask for help this holiday season. Make it fun… make it a joy to help you… and find a way to give back.

May you find the beauty in this holiday season as you boldly get organized, label more, keep things simple, and ask for help when you need it.

I wish you a joy filled and peaceful holiday.

By Sylvia Stinson-Perez

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Author Bio:

The author’s bio photo is a glam photo of Sylvia in a pink dress with spaghetti straps. Her hair is in a fancy updo with a pink flower on the left of her bun.
Sylvia Stinson-Perez

Sylvia Stinson-Perez has spent her career in the blindness field, and is the Chief Programs Officer for the American Foundation for the Blind. Sylvia believes the authentic shared experience of living with vision loss can lead to the development of bold confidence in living with blindness. She loves helping others find their beauty and courage on this journey.

Sylvia has Master’s degrees in Social Work, Visual Disabilities Rehabilitation, and Business Administration. Sylvia is blind as a result of Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), however, she believes that everyone should have the opportunity to achieve their potential.

Sylvia is a wife, a mother, a friend, an advocate, and a professional dedicated to making a positive difference. She enjoys reading, cooking, travel, crocheting, writing and public speaking, and time with loved ones.

Image Descriptions:

  • Header image: Christmas holiday background featuring 2 decorative candles, stars and lights on a wooden surface.
  • Holiday to do list written on lined paper in red and green marker sitting under a lamp on a wooden table.
  • Label is spelled outin red and green letters on wooden blocks.
  • Creative minimalist Christmas theme image of a red ribbon shaped like a Christmas tree.
  • Ask for help reminder note next to a cup of coffee and a pair of eyeglasses.
  • The author’s bio photo is a glam photo of Sylvia in a pink dress with spaghetti straps. Her hair is in a fancy updo with a pink flower on the left of her bun.
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