Family togetherness during the holiday season is something we look forward to, and often dread all at the same time. Ask 100 people why that is, and you will probably get 100 different answers that can all be wrapped up into one core thought, which is: Expectations! We each have our own expectation of what the holidays will bring to us and what they should look like. Yet, your picture-perfect expectations are not the same as other’s expectations, and you can end up in this sort of mess of unspoken worry and make-wrongs. So, would you like to give all-of-this up, and embrace the holidays for what they are meant to be? Following is some advice in how to do so:
#1: Get grounded in what it is you love about your family and the time you spend together.
Yes, even those we love most can get on our last nerve, which means we have to get present to what it is we love about our family and embrace them for who they are, not for what we wish they would be. You often have to look for the gold and the fun in everything. You may have to dig, but it’s there!
#2: Communicate fully and completely… which includes listening.
You never know what you may learn!
#3: Let go of your ego.
Are you still holding a 10-year old grudge? Have you been judgmental of someone else and need to let it go? If you want to be accepted no matter what, then you have to be the same for others!
#4: Keep it simple!
Spending time with our families is not about whose child is dressed the best or the most well behaved…
Spending time with our families is not about who has the loudest pipes on their Harley…
Spending time with our families is not about who makes the best chocolate cake! Let go of the feeling that everything must be perfect, so when it isn’t you won’t be disappointed!
Family; we can’t live with them and we can’t live without ‘em! It is one of those things we wrestle with when it comes to balancing who we are and what we need versus what the family needs. And in truth, we all need a sense of “family.” Family bonds go a long way in providing us with a sense of well-being and belonging! So, in this upcoming season of frantic “family” togetherness, remember this quote from George Moore:
“A man travels the world over in search of what he needs, and returns home to find it.”