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10 Tips To Surviving Family Holiday Gatherings

10 Tips To Surviving Family Holiday Gatherings

The holidays are meant for good food, family bonding, and creating lasting memories. Occasionally it also calls for family drama, arguing, and unnecessary tension. We’ve all been there.

Janet Taylor, M.D., provided some goods tips on the Huffington Post for those who find themselves saying, “Am I the only one who feels like there is something seriously wrong with these folks?” Here are her ten tips to get you through the holidays.

1. Reflect on past experiences. Examine what worked and what didn’t. If sleeping arrangements left you cranky and tired, think of an alternative. Shorten your trip or bunk somewhere else.
2. Have an attitude of gratitude. Yeah, they may be annoying, but it’s your family.
3. Resolve previous differences. It is not helpful to go home for the holidays to rectify an old disagreement. Make a phone call, send a text, write a letter with the intention of smoothing out any misunderstanding before you go.
4. Look for the humor. Try not to take everything so seriously. Sometimes you just have to laugh and say, “It is what it is”.
5. Exercise. Take your gear, plan to workout, and organize a family walk or active game. It’s a great stress-buster and if nothing else you will feel energized and more optimistic.
6. Invite a friend. Friends can offer a new perspective on your family and help create a more positive context.
7. Organize an event that creates a memory. For example, create a cookbook. Ask relatives to donate stories or recipes to share with each other. Take pictures and make a photo album to share.
8. Be yourself. These are folks who love and support you, no matter what. Relax and reconnect with your roots.
9. Set your own ground rules. Don’t’ allow yourself to be baited into behavior that is out of your character.
10. Keep a positive mindset. When presented with comment that may seem hurtful, ask yourself, “What’s another way to look at that?”

How do you deal with your family during family holiday gatherings?

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