As the holiday season approaches, you will have family and loved ones visiting from far and wide. Being inundated with so many visitors at once, your holiday season can literally be the best of times and the worst of times all at once. As much as we love our family, sometimes they can be too much to handle. Combined with the stress of the holiday season, family personalities can make the season not so bright. If you’re both excited and dreading the holiday gathering this Christmas, here are a few things that will help you stay merry.
Christmas comes but once a year
Remind yourself that you can do this. Your family only gathers like this once or maybe twice a year counting Thanksgiving. You deal with attitudes at work on a daily basis. An occasional run in with a family member that only happens once a year can’t be that bad right? To prevent a toe to toe blowout under the mistletoe, it may be a good idea to contact the family member in question and confront the issue you have with them prior to the big event. This will help you avoid the untimely release of pent up emotions that can get out of control while grandma is opening her gifts. Most importantly, you can prevent your annoyance with Uncle Jimmy’s drunken antics from ruining the Christmas gathering.
You’re probably not alone in your feelings about the holiday event. If Aunt Martha’s frequent insulting comments are getting on your nerves, there is a chance she gets on the nerves of other family members also. In a respectful and very tactful way, again, prior to the event, and perhaps over lunch, let Aunt Martha know how hurtful her words are and how they make you feel. It may be a good idea to take another family member who feels the same way along as added confirmation. However, avoid taking more than two family members to the intervention as Aunt Martha may feel as if she has been ganged up on and she may not be receptive to the information provided.
Focus on the Good Times
Your entire family doesn’t irk you, if they do, you have an entirely separate issue beyond Aunt Martha’s insutls and Uncle Jimmy’s drunken antics. Set your sights on enjoying the good times you will have at the family gathering. Focus on the once a year treets such as getting a slice of mother’s famous red velvet cake or watching the children line dance for the adults. The holidays are bigger than that one family member who annoys you. It’s unfair to yourself and those around you to allow circumstances that you cannot control to steal away your joy of the holidays. After all, people will be people and the only person’s actions you can ever fully control are your own.
In the end everyone has family that makes them crazy. The important thing is to be in complete control your response to someone else’s behavior. The holidays are already stressful enough without making yourself crazy over how someone else may or may not behave. Go to the family gathering with the best of intentions knowing that you’ve done all that you can to make the family event a holly, jolly one.