> Blogmas Day 9: Let's Talk - Christmas Shopping! - Its All Zara

Blogmas Day 9: Let's Talk - Christmas Shopping!

December 09, 2017

Hello readers and welcome to another Christmas edition of my Let's Talk segments! Last week we talked Christmas and our traditions to do with Christmas but this week we're talking Christmas Shopping! I have 2 fabulous writers joining me so please say hello to:

Abi: @abilhoward on Twitter and her blog can be found https://whatabigailsays.wordpress.com/

Poppy: @poppy_mayy on Twitter and her blog can be found at http://poppymayy.co.uk/
Without further ado, here is our Christmas Shopping themed Let's Talk!

Abi's thoughts: "Christmas is a really busy, stressful time for a lot of people. There’s presents to buy, food to organise and family to visit. The shops are heaving with people equally as irritated as you and no doubt you forget somebody’s present until the very last minute.

One thing that I personally really struggle with, and I know is hard for a lot of people, is crowded spaces. I often feel like people are watching me and judging me on the choices I’m making, from my clothes to my choice of presents. I don’t like not having an easy escape and sometimes large crowds and small spaces can make me feel trapped. It is extra difficult for me at Christmas because even though I love the markets and the decorated streets, I can be petrified to go for fear of an anxiety attack.

Here are a few tips that I find really useful when coping with anxiety whilst Christmas shopping:

1. Find your exit.

It sounds dramatic but I find it really reassuring to scan the shop for an easy escape route in case feelings of anxiety begin. This way, you can ease that feeling of panic a little by knowing you can get out quickly if you need to. This is especially helpful in larger shopping centres or new surroundings.

2. People will be happy whatever you get them

I worry far too much about getting the perfect gift, so much so that in the end I have been known to give up and not get anything at all. When out shopping, this can cause multiple arguments with myself and whoever has dared to come shopping with. Take a breather and remember, your family and friends will always appreciate the gesture. There is no pressure to blow their minds with an extraordinary gift!

3. Leave plenty of time…

I like to leave myself a full day to do my Christmas shopping if I can, as this eases my worries about traffic and means I can normally get multiple presents done in one go (and therefore I don’t need to go shopping as much!)

4. … And don’t rush!

Leaving a full day free also means I can take my time. I get more stressed and anxious if I feel like I am running around chasing time, and then start to panic if I haven’t got certain gifts that I aimed to get that day. Leaving plenty of time also means if I do need to take some time out and get some fresh air, I can do so without worrying about what time the shops close.

5. Finally, remember you are not alone.

Thousands of people are experiencing exactly the same things as you and there is plenty of help out there this holiday if you need it (scroll down for some helpful contact numbers for the UK).

However you are feeling, try to enjoy Christmas this year and remember to look after yourself and others over the next few days!

UK Helpful Numbers:

Childline: 0800 1111

Samaritans: 116 123"

Poppy's thoughts: "Christmas is actually my favourite time of the year. Not just because I get to spend more time with my friends and family or that my office is closed over the Christmas period, it's because I love that warm fuzzy festive feeling I get around this time of year. 

However as soon as I get out the door and into the havoc that is Christmas shopping, that warm fuzzy feeling disappears and is instead replaced with this unforgettable and irrevocable itch in my head that something terrible is going to happen. 

Upon entering the shopping centres, highstreets and markets at Christmas I feel overwhelmed, panicked and extremely self conscious. I just want to get in and out as quickly as possible. 

Luckily, now that I understand what sort of situations make me feel this way I have instead come to approach Christmas shopping in a different way. 

If I must physically go and get something from a store I usually do this earlier on in the year to avoid the crowds. This does require some careful planning, however I start planning presents in August specifically for this reason. I know this may not be practical if you're more of a spontaneous person but it has made me a more diligent organiser. 

Failing that, my partner and I have an Amazon Prime membership so I can always order gifts on there instead of physically going shopping. I love Amazon, as it's allowed me to still get all the things I need without going through the ordeal of massive festive crowds and disgruntled shop staff. 

Some would say I'm missing out on the excitement of Christmas shopping however I believe that I just enjoy it in a different way that's not going to make me feel uncomfortable which is the most important thing."

My thoughts: "For me Christmas shopping is super fun, I know that sounds weird because who in their right mind enjoys fighting crowds of people in various supermarkets? But the thing I love about it is knowing I'm buying things for people I love and I just want to make them feel as appreciated as they make me feel.

This year I seem to have it all figured out and I already have some gifts wrapped under my tree ready to present to my loved ones. It may be considered cheating but I actually do a lot of my shopping online and wrap it at home, this is easier for me living in a small town with no major stores to buy things from. The last few years me and my partner have been going to Meadowhall in Sheffield to do our Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve which sounds absolutely hectic but somehow we've managed to find it quite a good day out, tiring but good!

In my eyes gift buying is all about planning and knowing what you're going to get before you go because it saves so much time and energy; I like to take a list with me when I'm shopping so I can get in, grab my products and get out. The thing that gets my mood to crash while Christmas shopping is the masses of grumpy, hostile and sometimes pushy people that have their own agenda and don't always take other people into consideration. I've seen people actually fighting over groceries, presents and delivery slots; there was actually one time two girls physically fist-fought over the last gift set in a store and while they were pulling hair and throwing hands another person grabbed it and walked away as fast as possible - moral of the story is: DON'T BE SELFISH!

I'm due to go to Meadowhall on the 22nd of this month and I plan to get my gifts, grab some good food and get the heck back to my town before it gets busy. Thank goodness my boyfriend has a car because I'd be absolutely exhausted carrying my purchases around for long periods of time from one place to another!

I really enjoyed writing this segment with these two other writers and it's put me in the mood for some Christmas gift buying so onto Amazon I go! Join me tomorrow for another Lush Christmas product review!


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  1. This was such a lovely post.
    Your blogmas has been so different to the 'norm', i always am waiting for your next post to come out!
    As someone who suffers from anxiety, it was so nice to read this and know that others feel the same as me whilst shopping!
    I tend to revert to online shopping if I'm honest! But this post has such wonderful tips!

    1. Aww bless you sweetheart thank you! xx

  2. I can’t stand crowded places, so I usually do my Christmas shopping online or head to the shops super early to beat the crowds, but these are some really good tips!

    1. Yeah it can be a little intense at times! xx

  3. What a lovely post! I am loving how different and unique your blogmas is getting other bloggers involved was definitely a great move, also to related I also worry way too much about what I haven got someone and that it may be not enough!


    1. Thank you my love I'm doing my best to make it fun! xx