Some people find the holidays to be a time of complete family bliss! This article for the rest of us, along with a dose of self-conscious humor. Family time during the holiday can increase stress. Here’s some thoughts on how to deal with it.
Remember to be imperfect. Here’s the good news of the season: All families are imperfect!
Sometimes we get on each others’ nerves. There are things we wish we would have said, stuff we don’t know how to say, and things we wish we never had said. To paraphrase the Serenity Prayer from AA: may we do the things we need to do, meet the people we want to meet, accept the things about family that we cannot change or influence, AND have the wisdom to know the difference.
Acknowledge Mixed Feelings. We all get them. And so, with holiday family-time, keep it realistic. Allow for different feelings and thoughts about holiday family gatherings and strive for simplicity. Appreciate relationships vs. stuff. (See also “sense of humor” above.)
Acknowledge holiday-related perfectionism to get it “just right” or “procrastination blues.” Good planning or “catching up” are helpful. But hopefully, we’re spending holiday time with people we genuinely care about, imperfect as we all are, regardless of whether we strive for perfection or procrastinate.
Have patience with self and others. Remember: holidays can be a reminder of how life wasn’t always the way we imagined it to be. Maybe holidays remind us of those no longer with us, of how life was less than perfect in our past. Therefore, we may have surprising mixed thoughts and feelings about, or during the holidays. If this is you, please consider discussing your concerns with a mental health professional.
If you see anything here that you relate to, or reminds of problems that don’t seem to go away, therapists at CenterLife Counseling are available to provide help and to assist you in working though the stress and issues that can arise around the holiday season.
Call CenterLife Counseling today to schedule an appointment today.
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