Feeling Scrooged: New survey finds nearly eight in ten Americans struggle to find time to relax during the holiday season.
NEW YORK — As another year winds down, the holidays are meant to be a time to take a breath, recharge, and reflect on the past twelve months. Ironically, though, the very season that is supposed to promote relaxation is doing the exact opposite to most Americans, according to a recent survey of 2,000 adults. In all, 77% of respondents say they have a very hard time relaxing during the holidays, and usually end up feeling more stressed and worn down than ever.
As far as what is stressing so many of us out, 56% say that the extra financial strain brought on by the holidays is their biggest source of anxiety. Others frequently cited finding gifts for everyone (48%), stressful family events (35%), and putting up decorations (29%).
All in all, an incredible of 88% of respondents believe the holidays are the most stressful time of the year. More over, for many, excessive feelings of stress start as early as November (84%), and a majority of that group say their stress usually peaks in late November.
The survey, commissioned by JoyOrganics, also revealed that many (67%) seem to be placing unnecessary pressure on themselves to produce the “perfect” holiday, and 47% admit they usually take on more than they can handle each year.
Other telling statistics include: 43% say their schedules become jam-packed during the holidays, and 59% would characterize their typical holiday season as “chaotic.”
Unbelievably, two in five respondents say they would rather stand in line at the DMV than deal with holiday stress! Similarly, one in five would rather sit on a long plane ride beside a crying child.
Unfortunately, all of that stress makes it very difficult for many Americans to enjoy the holidays (49%). So much so that a full third of respondents flat out said they just don’t enjoy the holidays anymore.
Due to all of this, many say they are planning on downsizing their usual celebrations this year. Half of respondents plan on setting a budget for gifts, and 34% are going to do their best not to spread themselves too thin with holiday events and parties.
Of course, the holidays also mean extra time spent with family, which in many cases can lead to more than a few disagreements or awkward moments. The average American will have six family arguments between Thanksgiving and New Years, the survey finds.
If you’re wondering what people tend to fight about, the top five reasons for arguments given by respondents were: how much money to spend on other people (20%), how much money to spend on parents (20%), what presents to buy (18%), which family members to visit (16%), and where to go on Christmas day (16%).
The survey was conducted by OnePoll.