The festive season is filled with social gatherings and family dinners but sometimes all this togetherness can be overwhelming.
If the pressure of Christmas is becoming too much, these top tips will help you avoid a meltdown this year.
Accept that there will be ups and downs. Emotions are heightened during this time of the year, and you can expect to experience a bit of a roller coaster. Because you care about your family and what they think of you, you may find yourself putting extra pressure on yourself to host the ‘perfect’ Christmas. Accept that the mix of emotions come with the season, do your best and try not to dwell on the negatives.
Know your triggers. If you’re aware of what will trigger negative emotions, have plans in place to combat them. For example, if you know you’ll become irritable after spending long periods of time in certain people’s company, have a spot you can go to unwind. Or, in the middle of a boiling hot kitchen filled with turkey aromas and roast spuds, you feel yourself about to reach boiling point, walk away and treat yourself to a festive film or chocolate treat.
Don’t take things personal. From how to set the table to how to cook the turkey, behave around the children and wrap the presents, Christmas tends to bring out people’s ‘expertise’. If you find someone being critical of the way you do things during the festive season, do not take it personal as it’s unlikely it was done to intentionally upset you. Instead, politely express your appreciation for their ideas and advice, and move on.
Move yourself away from conflict. The pressure of the festive season gets to even the jolliest of folks and you may see conflict arising in the Christmas kitchen or at the annual drinks. Be respectful to everyone but when you see conflict bubbling, look for ways to get away from it. This could mean getting out of the conversation, moving to another room, or even putting an end to the night.
Be selfish when you need to. Saying no to invitations to social gatherings and Christmas parties can be challenging but if you want to have time to do some of the things you love, you need to learn to put your own needs and wants first. Constantly saying yes when you really mean no, can have a negative impact on your wellbeing.