November 20th, 2011 12:49 EST
Tips to Keep the Peace this Holiday Season Without Compromising Your Dignity, Integrity or Sanity!
You can see it coming...the joy, the stress, the fun, the questions, the arguments. The holiday season is upon us. For many it is a time to be grateful, for others, particularly those who are in the process of reorganizing their family, it can be a time when gratitude is fleeting.
It is easy to fall prey to the relationship traps that are out there and get caught up in differing personalities, disagreements and arguments. It can be a time of fueds. In keeping with our philosophy of reducing conflict (see our website at www.brigidduffield.com) the following are some of our best tips to help you stay out of futile arguments which could destroy your holiday, holiday season or even worse, a good relationship.
Hopefully, these tips will help you keep the peace this holiday season without compromising your dignity, integrity or sanity!
1. SSS - Stand Back, Shut Up & Smile.
2. Understand what your expectations are. If you expect only laughing, hand-holding and a family sing-a-long, you will probably be disappointed when that doesn`t actually happen. Keep your expectations low and don`t react when others don`t read your mind.
3. Go late or leave early. Remember common courtesy and let the host know in advance what your plans are.
4. Schedule and plan your holiday parties and activities you enjoy in a time frame that is workable for you.
5. Arrive at those functions you choose in a festive mood. Bring joy and peace to the event. Projecting your good mood onto others will hold holiday funk at bay.
6. Don`t get trapped. Plan to have a safe person...your spouse, a sibling or a trusted friend. Be sure it is someone who will support you if a conversation turns sour. If they can`t be with you in person, have them on phone standby.
7. Avoid conversations with people you want to avoid. Steer clear of the ones who will naturally pull you in. Plan your polite, yet to the point, conversation stoppers.
8. Practice some stock one-liners to deflect the negative comments you`d like to avoid. Include, "Perhaps you`re right", "That`s an interesting opinion," "I`ll think about that perspective" or "I need to wait on this until I have more information."
9. Excuse yourself if you find yourself biting your tongue...people frequently stay too long in a place where conflict is likely to occur. Walk away, just leave, go for a walk. You will be amazed how few people will miss you.
10. Avoid the 3 C`s... Criticism, Complaints and Condemnation. Don`t fight every fight. Don`t win every argument.
11. Bring your compassion, humor and graciousness...remember that everyone feels stress around the holidays and emotions run high. Try to look the other way when you hear a negative comment or give someone the benefit of the doubt..hope they do the same for you.
12. Above all: listen, listen, listen. Often we increase conflict by talking and restating our positions. Stop and listen to what the other person is saying. What you thought you heard may not be what they said.
Remember that this is a time of giving thanks for the people and relationships in your life that you enjoy.
We are thankful for you - our family, friends, colleagues and clients. We send our very best wishes for a joy filled Holiday Season.
Brigid A. Duffield
The Law Office of Brigid A. Duffield, P.C. &
Legally Speaking, Inc.