“Tough times never last, but tough people do.” Robert Schuller
Rule number One: Say No to another holiday with bad memories.
Rule number Two: Make Requests
- If alcohol has contributed to bad memories, declare this an alcohol free holiday. If the celebration is at your home, you design the rules. Don’t let people intimidate you by saying I’ll bring alcohol. No make your declaration first, “You are all welcome to join us for the holidays, and we are having an alcohol free holiday. If someone doesn’t want to come because of that, wish him/her a great holiday.
- Bill Maher said on a recent program something like the holidays are about “spending money you don’t have, on people you might not like, for gifts they don’t want?” Although this may seem harsh, if any of it is true make requests for how you want the gift/money holiday scenario to go. Have a drawing and everyone buys only one gift, ask that the gifts be experiences such as a meal at a local restaurant, support local businesses, give gifts that don’t cost any money, no gifts, only giving to local charities allowed, take pictures and make collages for everyone about the holiday, make a movie, put together a holiday video for everyone to take home, and/or whatever creative idea you might have.
- Make requests for people to bring different aspects of the dinner so you are only responsible for the main part of the meal. If people are visiting from out of town for several days, do a dinner plan together and give them a night to plan, cook, and serve or take you out.
- Make requests for exercise. Take walks at the very minimum before and after all meals. Endorphins are important at this time of year.
- Make immediate requests if fighting begins for people to stop, “Stop we are not going to discuss this now.”
- Start every morning with loud declarations of what you are grateful for to get everyone on track for the day. Start every morning with a walk in nature or a walk to set the tone for the day.
My last tool is to speak authentically. Just be honest and speak from your heart. ” I have a long history of bad memories about the holidays, so I am excited to have you join me in reinventing the holidays for my family.” “Thank you for being with me for my first great memory of a holiday season.”