How to Deal with Holiday Stress & Get Along with Your Relatives
Florida Psychological Associates LLC
1. Set aside 5 minutes before a holiday event to get clear in your mind.
Ask yourself “What do I really want?” “What is my desired outcome?”
Make sure you are specific.
For example, “I want to have a meaningful conversation with cousin Billy”.
It helps to write it on a notecard.
*Pro tip: Plan an event with the family that encourages connection.
You could organize a photo album, ride around looking at
Christmas lights, or resurrect a past family tradition.
2. When you get in the moment and begin to feel stressed think,
“Is this helping me get to my desired outcome?”
*Pro tip: Buddy up! Find your favorite family member or
bring a friend. Use each other for support to complete your goal.
3. Is telling cousin Billy that he is out of his mind for his political conspiracy theory going to help you get your desired outcome? If the answer is “no,” then let it go. Remember that this season is about family and tradition. This is a time to get together and remember your blessings.
*Pro tip: Have your favorite stress-relief strategies ready. Some of my favorites are taking a walk, taking a moment of meditation, and listing ten things I love.
4. Prepare your answers
for “those” questions. You know your mother is going to ask about your dating life and that your grandfather will ask why haven’t you been promoted. This will help you plan a response to these difficult questions beforehand. If you desire to connect with a family member and find yourself tempted to bring up hot topics, remember your goal. This can help keep you on track for what you really want.
5. Schedule time for yourself. You are more likely to be able to handle individuals like “cousin Billy” if you have had happy moments scattered throughout your day. Find small reasons to celebrate, no matter how finite. The easiest way to do this is to have an attitude of gratitude. Listing out what you are thankful for is a great way to bring about this mindset. Research shows this can help boost your mood and reduce stress immediately.
As stressful as the holiday season is, remember all the joy and peace this season brings to the world. Pass it on!
To learn more, check out Dr. Drew on the Morning Show or Dr. Hume on the Morning Show!
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