Creating A Cohesive Holiday Gathering
The holidays are upon us, and with this can come the stress of planning or attending holiday parties. My belief is that the holiday season should be joyous, and in order to make this season stress-free and enjoyable, you may need to plan ahead. If you find yourself starting to negatively anticipate the upcoming holiday season and the excessive amounts of social gatherings that come with it, I am here to offer tips to help you actually enjoy this time of year instead of dread it.
Things To Keep in Mind
For many people, the holiday season is a happy and joyous time, filled with family and friends. However, nonstop social demands can also be very stressful. The following tips are aimed to provide you with the support you need this holiday season.
- Be Kind To Yourself: A significant amount of dysfunctional dynamics that arise in the holiday season are rooted in the projection and misdirection of feelings or emotions onto other people. Be kind to yourself this holiday season, and keep in mind that if others are involving you in drama or creating hostility, it does not need to be a reflection of you. If for example, a sibling or cousin calls you names or picks a fight, you need not take it personally. Simply acknowledge that the other person may be struggling in some way that is causing them to misdirect their emotions.
- Think Ahead: It will be helpful to strategize how you are going to navigate certain conversations, sensitive issues, or triggering questions if possible ahead of time. Holiday gatherings can tend to be full of the same types of questions and conversations, and if you take some time to think ahead about how you will deal with them, you will help keep your stress levels low.
- Give Yourself Time to Digest Before Speaking: Taking a pause or breath before you respond will help give yourself better peace of mind. Instead of letting your emotions do all of the speaking, give some time for your initial reaction to subside before speaking harshly. Although you may want to respond harshly and say exactly what you feel at the time, giving yourself the time to process your feelings and thoughtfully decide what you want to say will help keep negative interactions at bay.
- Organize a Secret Santa Gift Exchange For Your Family Gathering: Giving gifts is a common act during the holiday season, and has been proven to have a positive effect on those who give. Organizing a gift exchange is a great way to ensure that everyone involved will give and receive something. Commonly there will be a cap to how much is spent on all gifts, which is up to your discretion. One of the strongest proven effects of gift giving is that the giver’s feelings for others are reinforced, and they end up feeling more caring, compassionate, and loving.
Contact Your Manhattan Beach and South Bay Therapist Today
I am more than happy to provide you with more tips and ideas that will help you navigate the holiday season. Be kind to yourself, reflect, and remember that you are not alone. Know that you can always trust that I will take a non-judgemental stance in our discussions, and help you find a path forward. Please do not hesitate to give me a call if you would like someone to talk to. You can reach me by phone at (310) 892-2572 or send me a message via my contact page. I look forward to hearing from you soon.