Are you worried about spending the holidays with the in-laws or other relatives this year? Don’t worry, we have got top tips for having a great time – no matter where you are!
Christmas is regularly billed as the most wonderful time of the year but, for many people, spending the holidays with in-laws or other relatives can be a stressful time. Thankfully, this doesn’t have to be the case!
So, whether you are hosting at home or attending someone else’s celebrations, here are 7 pointers for you to mentally prepare yourself and have a great time.
1. Watch out for triggers
If there are certain topics or pain points that you know usually lead to an argument – avoid them. Whether this is talking politics or offering cooking advice, if something tends to get a particular person riled up, it is best to avoid it.
2. Set a leaving date
Whether you are travelling to your in-laws for the holidays or they are coming to you, decide beforehand how long the stay will be. If there is no end in sight, the chances of arguing steadily grow and it could be the ‘one more day’ that pushes you over the edge.
3. Get plenty of sleep
The holidays can be an exhausting time for lots of people. Make sure to get plenty of rest. Announcing your early departure for bed can also be a useful tactic if you feel tensions rising.
Going for a walk, run or to a local gym is a great way to escape and get some alone time. It will clear your head and you can come back feeling refreshed.
5. Help without imposing
If you like to cook, it can be difficult to watch someone do something in the kitchen that you deem to be wrong. But, if you are a guest in someone’s home, sometimes it is better to bite your tongue and say nothing at all. Just think – if the situations were reversed, would you want your in-laws telling you how to make dinner?
Offer to help, but if you get the sense they are better left alone then do just that.
6. Share the burden
If possible, try not to all stay together for the entire duration of the holidays. If your parents are planning on staying with you, see if your siblings can house them for a night or two. Similarly, be sure not to overstay your welcome. Each family is entrenched in their own ways and having multiple guests for a long period of time can put a strain on even the most patient of households.
7. Embrace new traditions
Every family has their own traditions. Whether this is having a huge Christmas dinner and watching the Die Hard boxset, going to morning mass, or doing nothing at all, each family is different and needs to be accepted as so. Just as it might be jarring for you to adapt yourself to new, long-held traditions that you know nothing about, so is it for your in-laws to adapt to your customs.
A good tip is to try and slowly introduce and accept small traditions from both sides of the family. Compromise is the best way to have a stress-free holidays that everyone will enjoy.