How to Deal with Family Stress During the Holidays

Sharing space with relatives you don't see eye to eye can be super stressful. Everyone is looking for advice on how to get along with your loved ones you don't exactly mesh with.

Aim for short visits rather than long days with these relatives. Make sure you make it clear that its your holiday, too, so you have a role in scheduling your time.

Going into the situation, try to think of a few conversation topics beforehand so when the conversation veers off course, you’re ready to steer it in another direction.

Setting boundaries is also essential. Don't want to talk about your love life? Don't. You certainly do not need to. If someone asks: why aren't you married yet? Or are you seeing anyone: say politely:

"Right now I'm taking applications, but once I've hired someone, you will definitely know"

OR

Thanks to @wemetatacme say:

"I'm working on myself now, but when I have news, I will be sure to share it with you."

When your relatives want to give you unsolicited advice, make sure you thank them for them caring. And then ask them how they're doing in their business...

You can plan activities, like going for a walk, that get you out of the house for much-needed breaks.

Exercise offers a break and it helps reduce your stress.

I know it's hard, but try to have compassion for these family members. A good way to start is by trying to find one thing you like or find interesting about that person. This helps focus the brain on finding something good rather than bad. We’re complicated humans and we have to keep in mind that everyone has their own story and problems.

Meet them with love and less dislike.

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