Watching TV and movies often gives us the idea of a perfect holiday where everyone gets along and it’s all joyful and peaceful. This is very rarely the case in real life. I’ve complied some tips to help you avoid the almost inevitable holiday drama
1. Don’t expect to heal old wounds
Don’t use holidays as a time to repair old childhood wounds, with difficult family, keep conversation simple. Don’t get drawn into their drama. Don’t apologize or defend yourself. Stay near the people you like and that like you and don’t forget to breathe.
2. Don’t expect people to change
Don’t expect people to be any different from who they are, whatever or whoever irritated you last year, will probably do so this year. Hoping people will be different this year just sets you up for disappointment.
3. Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries
If someone tries to push your buttons, remind yourself not to personalize it. How people act and behave is a reflection of who they are and has nothing to do with you.
4. Plan ahead
Set limits ahead of time about things like how long you might stay at a family function. Try and have some go-to coping strategies in mind before you get there.
5. Control what you can control
Whether your family has hurt you or regularly offends you, try to use holiday time to become an even stronger person. Remember no one can touch your thoughts, so think what you want, laugh to yourself and give yourself compassion.
6. Look for joyful moments
Remember this is real life not a movie. Throw away the idea of achieving perfection, but create moments that are special to you.