Are You Spending The Holidays 🎄With Your Inlaws?🤷🏾‍♀️ Here are a few tips to surviving it:

Where are you spending the holidays?

Do you like the people you will be spending it with🤦🏾‍♀️

If you’re married like me, then you have to worry about you know…the in-laws…😳

Now, lucky for me both sets of my in-laws live in Texas and my husband’s real mother hates me 🤪🤷🏾‍♀️, but my step-mother-in-law loves me to pieces…

Either way, guess what I don’t have to spend any time with them this year…whewwww! The pressure is off, but since you have to here are a few tips on surviving this holiday season without causing any damage to your relationships…😁👇🏾

Many families of all ages feel intense stress as they approach the holiday season. They know someone’s feelings will inevitably be hurt. They are stretched to spend time with both sides of their family or end up feeling guilty they can’t be everywhere. Then there’s the stress of spending time with someone you don’t necessarily get along with.

Some families use every combination possible to make their extended family happy. Christmas morning at home, Lunch at noon at her mom’s house, late evening at his dad’s house. Then throw in divorced and blended family dynamics and the day became even fuller. It can often mean spending only a few minutes at any one place.

The holiday season is the perfect time to reconsider how you want to be with extended family, particularly your in-laws. The holiday season is a time for creating your own traditions while setting boundaries with your in-laws. It’s time to determine what you want and how you want to spend your holiday.

Give these 7 tips a try and see how your family gathering becomes memorable instead of wretched:

Communicate

It’s important to communicate your wishes in a way that doesn’t make them feel like you don’t care. Communicate in advance what you want. Ask them what their preferences are as well. Then work on creating a plan that works for all of you.

Find neutral ground

If the stress comes from going to one family’s house instead of the other’s home, invite everyone to a beach house, rented cabin or someplace you can all enjoy that no one owns the space.

Get them involved

Invite them to join in what’s happening throughout the day. Include your mother-in-law in the meal prep or your daughter-in-law in the gift wrapping. Have your father-in-law read the Christmas story or another family favorite story. Try to make them feel comfortable and welcome. If you’re going to their house, ask if you can help them in some way. Give your mother-in-law compliments, talk to your father-in-law about topics that mean something to him.

It’s not personal

Often the tension we feel from out in-laws at this time of year comes from their being stressed as well. This type of stress can make that seemingly harmless bad behavior to become even more exaggerated. It’s more about their insecurities than it is about you, so try to leave the defensive mode at home.

Look on the humorous side

It’s much easier to laugh at what your in-law says or does than to spend the holidays tense and on edge. Search hard to find the humor in situations that might otherwise make you feel criticized or left out. Humor helps you stay calm at the time and keeps some of the tension from exploding into a full-blown breakdown.

Plan an exit strategy

When you visit your in-law’s house, have an agreed amount of time you will stay. If it’s a matter of one of you want to stay longer, you may have to arrive in two cars. Let the family know one of you need to leave at a certain time for whatever reason.

Have some downtime

Find a quiet time for yourself during the hectic holiday season. You need to re-energize. Or if you are staying at your in-laws, you may need to find a little quiet time to catch your breath or get away from them. 🙌🏾

End Goals On Relieving Holiday Stress

The goal is to make progress on having a less stressed holiday with your in-laws. There won’t be perfection. It’s a matter of building a relationship with the family that will grow with time. With a little effort on your part, and hopefully, theirs too, you could end up having one of the calmest holidays you’ve ever had.

Best Wishes Friends….🎄

𝓞𝓵𝓲𝓿𝓲𝓪 𝓑. 𝓢𝓱𝓮𝓹𝓱𝓮𝓻𝓭

Life Empowerment Mentor/ Transformation Coach

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Do You Suffer From Holiday Depression?….🦃🎄

Do you suffer from holiday depression, stress, and anxiety??

Do your family members make you crazy around this time of the year?…

Wondering what Aunt Edith will say to embarrass you around the holiday table this year? Thinking that Tums and Tylenol won’t be enough to endure the extra helpings of “sarcasm served cold,” that’s dished out by your mother in law?😒

If you dread family holidays with your cooked-out clan, you’re not alone. The Christian Post posted results from their recent survey: Twenty-four percent of individuals surveyed they dreaded seeing relatives and 16% stated that they did not look forward to attending holiday parties and events.🤷🏾‍♀️

According to an article in Entrepreneur.com, more than 60% of baby boomers, Gen Xers and millennials report feeling increased stress at holiday time. This is at least partially owed to strained relationships and forced interactions with family during the most socially overbooked and financially burdensome time of year.

So why, when we think of celebrating another year coming to a close, and celebrating that with our relatives, does this incite panic attacks and neurosis rather than a peaceful, and benevolent feeling? And a better question, how to avoid conflict at Christmas? Below, some reasons and solutions to family stress during the holidays.

Clashes of Personality

Not everyone has the same ideas about things, and that’s no more apparent than when the entire family gets together. Whether it’s quibbling over how long to cook the turkey, arguing over who gets to host and who gets to make the trip… not agreeing on how much to spend on presents, or navigating conversational minefields… different family personality types can come into conflict at holiday time for sure. And please don’t add politics to the mix…especially during this time!

Want a Stressed Free Holiday??Follow These Tips 🎄🎁👇🏾

“The stress-free way to enjoy the holidays is to plan, take one step at a time, and have a sense of humor.” Beth Tabak

Can you feel the holiday jitters beginning? Suddenly there it is right around the corner. Relax! Take time to plan well now and ease into the holidays with a big smile. Grab a journal and pen, and let’s get started.

🎁Reminisce over previous holidays- In your journal create a column for What Works and another for Not That Again. Under What Works list the activities that bring you joy, come naturally, and click into place. Under Not That Again list your challenges. Jot down the things that drain your energy and bring you down. What can you do to delegate, dump, or change the items in the Not That Again column and embrace more of the activities in the What Works column? What changes need to be made?

🎄Choose a theme you can be excited about- What is important to you this holiday? Base your theme on that. If you want to stay home instead of traveling your theme could be “Home for the Holidays”. If your budget is tight consider “Simply Sensational”. Your theme helps you stay focused. A theme that honors your spirituality could be “Faith and Family First”. Or choose a favorite quote such as Mahatma Gandhi’s “Be the Change You Wish to See in the World”. Get creative, have fun, and write it down.

🎁Set your top 4 priorities- Base them on what you really want which should connect with your theme. Get crystal clear. Write them down. When you know your priorities you are able to respond easily to a request and set boundaries. When someone asks you to get involved request 24 hours to respond. Look at your priorities and see if it serves them. If it does, consider it. If not, the answer is likely no.

🎄Create a Map- What if you took a big trip without planning? You would likely get lost, waste time, and experience anxiety. It makes sense to plan at the holidays when so many areas of our lives are effected: time, energy, personal care, relationships, physical environment, and finances. Consider creating a task list thru the end of the year. It takes a block of time but will save you time and stress. It will rescue you from running in circles, going back and forth to the same place, and trying to remember what’s next. In the past I’ve had hundreds of items on my task list. No wonder we get stressed when we attempt this in our heads. Here’s a tool to help. On your computer create a chart with 4 columns. Use your theme for the header. Under your theme list your priorities horizontally. Label the columns in a way that is helpful to you. I use Business, Personal, Holiday, and Need List. Use small font and minimal margin space to fit as many rows as possible. Print your map. List your tasks and add on as they come to you. Keep your map with you at all times. Schedule time to carry out the tasks. Have fun and build momentum as you make progress. Remember to save it for next year.

🎁Simplify- Every task must be handled. You can do it, delegate it, or dump it. Eliminate what does not serve your priorities. What can you get help on and delegate? This is a good time to get rid of those items on your Not That Again list. Hire someone to decorate or a housekeeper for the month. Have everyone bring a dish instead of you doing it yourself. Get your family involved and remember that things don’t have to be perfect. Let go. This will give you the space to embrace what you truly enjoy.

🎄Set a budget- Develop a budget that feels good. There are lots of ways to make a holiday special without adding stress to your budget. Show people they are appreciated. Plan family fun and activities. You can let someone know what is special about them in a card, letter, cassette, or video. Get creative. Every year I have one gift for the kids to find. I wrap empty boxes inside each other. When they open the last box there is a clue telling them the next step. Don’t let a tight budget steal your joy. Make it fun!

🎁Set boundaries- Decide now what you will not tolerate. Write it down. Remember your Not That Again list? Is there someone who ropes you into things you don’t want to do? Have the conversation that’s overdue. No is no. If someone keeps asking after you said no, they are attempting to control you. Setting boundaries is about educating people on how they can treat you. Is there someone you need to educate?

🎄Schedule time for planning and yourself- When is a good time to update your plan? When can you take time for you? Put it on your calendar each week thru the end of the year. Keep the appointments. Add this line to your daytimer as a reminder: “I have an appointment in honor of myself this ______(day) at __:__ (time) to do something special for me because I sooooooo deserve it!”

🎁Give in a way that gives you joy vs. obligation- When you give in a way that comes naturally to you, you stay in integrity with who you are. Therefore, you are able to share your own special gifts with others. When you are doing what you love life clicks. If there is a situation you are dreading, think about how you can tweak it and handle it in a way that would bring you more joy.

🎄Take action now- Begin today so that you are tying up your last bows well before the pitter patter of hoofs on the rooftop. Keep your holiday journal and map close at hand. The sooner you complete your tasks, the sooner you can sit back, smile, and enjoy the season!

What I want for you is to take action to move one step forward to prepare for the holidays…Starting Now!

Please send your thoughts and comments. I would love to hear from you.😀

Olivia

(Your Hoilday Fairy) 🧚🏾‍♀️

Print off your What’s Working/Not That Again PDF on me:👇🏾

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1kal0HcjPNkfelCV80nNp4j2WSLPKrK4q/view?usp=drivesdk