Christmas is supposed to be a happy and joyful time, a period for spending quality time with family and friends, and for getting along with both those close and more distant to us.
For many, Christmas can be a difficult time of year. An old family dispute may rise to the surface, the reality of the family dynamic can disappoint, and you may be reminded of prior loses; those loved ones who are no longer in your life.
Here are some tips for making Christmas better for yourself and others around you:
1. Manage your expectations
There is no such thing as a ‘Perfect’ Christmas. Expecting children and cheeky uncles to be on their best behaviour is likely to leave you feeling annoyed and disappointed when things don’t go according to plan. Consider loosening your desire for control and allow others to be themselves.
2. Take some time out for yourself
Remember that you are allowed some me-time. This is especially important if you have a home full of visitors. No one expects you to be ‘on’ all of the time. Take a short walk, have breakfast in bed, watch your favourite TV program; be kind to yourself, after all it’s Christmas and you deserve it!
Those hosting Christmas day may feel overwhelmed by all of the prep-work, cooking, not to mention the expense associated with food and drinks. Taking it upon yourself to do everything is a certain path to Christmas-stress. The power of delegation is the remedy; ask others to help will ease the burden.
When it comes to gifts, it is genuinely the thought that counts, not the price-tag. Buying presents should not mean getting yourself into debt. Be realistic about your budget and stick to it; impoverishing yourself will not benefit those around you.
Getting too merry on the festive spirit can lead to arguments and an uneasy atmosphere. Be aware of your limits and stay mindful of your alcohol intake for your own sake and others too. Getting lost in an alcohol-haze is neither fun to do or pleasant to witness, so watch out for yourself and each other.
Finally, remember that Christmas doesn’t have to be great, but good enough will do nicely.