Blog-How to Avoid Family Feuds During the Holidays

How to Avoid Family Feuds During the Holidays

In an ideal world, the holidays would only be filled with good times and happy memories. Unfortunately, most families don’t live in that Norman Rockwell reality.

It seems that every family has at least one relative who excels at creating drama during the holidays. When you’re around such negative or aggressive people, it’s common to feel apprehensive, defensive, and uncomfortable. Your body may react to stressful situations by secreting excessive amounts of adrenaline, which will make you feel even more anxious and on edge.

So how do you handle someone who thrives on conflict? Fighting fire with fire, by raising your voice or using abusive or unsavory language, certainly won’t help matters. Avoiding confrontations isn’t the answer either, since minimizing or brushing aside a dispute can further embolden the instigator and make things even worse. To effectively deal with disagreements, handle them calmly and appropriately as they happen.
If you encounter family strife this holiday season, implement these three practical strategies:

Keep Your Cool

To prevent a pressure packed situation from getting out of hand, always keep your cool. Closely monitor your comments and reactions to make sure they’re coming from a rational place, rather than an emotional one. Offer your relative thoughtful advice rather than criticism. Tone of voice is crucial in disarming a potentially heightened situation.

Build a Bridge

Instead of trying to convince the other person that your viewpoint is correct, attempt to understand their perspective as well. The main objective isn’t to win the argument but to remove potential threats, address concerns and find common ground with the other person. Building a bridge is the best way to avert a quarrel before it even starts.

Take It Outside

When drawn into a discussion that makes you feel uncomfortable, look for a way to redirect the conversation. If that doesn’t work, find a polite way to remove yourself from the situation. Playing a game is a great way to get the entire family outside for some fun and exercise. It’s also an effective way to let off some steam when things get too tense inside the house.

It has been said that the holidays bring out the best and worst in people. When it comes to the latter, you don’t have to let someone else ruin your holiday. Practicing these conflict management strategies can help to ensure that everyone in your family enjoys a fun-filled, stress-free holiday season.

The best way to improve mood, increase energy, and optimize brain function is to get brain SPECT imaging at one of the Amen Clinics. By discovering your particular brain type, we can create a customized solution for you.

If you or a loved one is struggling with behavioral or mental challenges, we can help find the root of the problem and provide treatment options that address more than just symptoms. Call us today at 888-288-9834 or visit us online to schedule a visit.

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  1. Viktoriya Vecorko says:

    Is reading a book on Kindle considered same as time spent on the computer?

  2. Rebecca Habache says:

    Hello Dr. Amen, I am in that particular situation where my sister in law called me to advise me about my mild “autistic daughter”. My husband and I have had problems with her before. Years ago she lost her job, and became recluse, depressed, and didn’t see people or us,. To make a long story short, she started taking medications for her depression and acted defensive towards our family. She called to advise on my daughter’s up bringing, and that’s when I cussed her out, and became upset at her, I completely lost it and told her off. I tried calling her and texting her, but she refused to talk to me, so I gave up on her. What do you advise me to do???


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