10 ways to keep your cool this Christmas

stressed santa (cropped)
18-12-2017

It's the season to be jolly, or so the song would have us believe... but, actually, Christmas can be one of the most stressful times of the year for many of us.

People can put themselves under immense pressure to create the perfect day and spending all that concentrated time with relatives can cause tempers to fray and lead to family arguments.

Law firms and family counselling services, such as Relate, say that enquiries about divorce proceedings or mediation soar after Christmas. And according to festive surveys, many British families notch up five arguments on Christmas Day - with the earliest kicking off before 10am.

So what can you do to keep your cool? Here are LionHeart's top tips.

  1. Delegate...

  2. Share out responsibilities between the family, including guests, from prepping veg, to washing up and collecting up all the wrapping paper and empties for recycling. It’s your Christmas, too.

  3. Keep some perspective...
    We all want to make Christmas as memorable as we can, but it is just one day of the year and it does not have to be perfect.

  4. Drink in moderation...
    Too much booze can loosen tongues and cause arguments. One or two glasses might make you feel merry, but over-indulging can lower your mood.

  5. Break recurring conversations and themes...
    All that time spent with relatives you maybe don’t see very often can bring up old irritations, conflicts and triggers for arguments. Try not to rake over the past; change the subject or politely excuse yourself from the room.

  6. Go for a walk...
    Being cooped up in the house can lead to kids getting over-stimulated, adults getting agitated and make your nerves jangle. Plan a brisk half-hour walk or trip to the park to blow the cobwebs away and get some fresh air.

  7. Laugh...
    Dig out the old board games, or watch a comedy or feel-good film on TV. The act of smiling and laughing lifts your mood.

  8. Listen...
    Take other people’s points of view into account. It’s not a crime to have a different opinion. If you can’t agree to differ, change the subject. Is it really worth an argument?

  9. Count to 10...
    Sometimes the old sayings really do ring true: taking a few seconds really does help to avoid speaking or acting in the heat of the moment.

  10. Take time out...
    If it’s all getting on top of you, go for a quick walk, shut yourself away to make a phone call to a friend, or lock the door and sit on the loo for five minutes.

  11. Count your blessings...
    We know, we know, it can be stressful and it can push all your buttons. But take a moment to stop and look at all the positive and good things in your life this Christmas Day, and be grateful for them.

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