Holidays can be a stressful time. Every family has its own little quirks. Various personalities and the past hurts, dramas and disappointments that make up life. Here are some tips to help all of us have a happy gathering!

  1. Prepare yourself before the event by letting go of expectations! We often have an ideal holiday in our heads that just cannot be delivered. This  no room for disappointment.
  2. Avoid hot topics and touchy issues, you aren't going to change anyone's mind or attitude. Let those strong personalities have their rant and watch the show. It isn't about you anyway!
  3. If there is a current issue, like job change, divorce, anything you are sensitive about prepare a simple answer for the inevitable questions so you aren't caught off guard.
  4. Need a break? Offer to do the dishes, the host will appreciate the help and this should allow you to limit contact with toxic people and subjects.
  5. Adults getting a little to snippy, gossipy or rude? Why not join the kids? Play with them or read a story, little ones can be a truly wonderful reminder of  good things!
  6. Try and focus on the good in every person, if nothing else this will occupy your mind as some people really require a lot of thought!
  7. Set a time to depart the gathering, there is something you must do!
  8. Lastly, let this holiday be its own. Let past problems and regrets stay in the past and move forward with peace and love.