Guard Yourself from the Negativity of Loved Ones this Holiday Season

Day 5: End of the year read between the lines – too short series

When family and loved ones gather to celebrate during holiday seasons – Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah (par exemple), we often find those who compare you to the well-to-do family member, mention of your weight, your love life, your non-existent future children, your past. These conversation “starters” can be triggering for some and tend to leave a sour taste in your mouth.

Dear World,

Fun fact: you can ‘dead’ conversations that trigger you. The holidays do not pose as an invitation for your family to spread their negative energy on to you. It may be easier said than done but you have to protect your peace. If you don’t want to talk about the heavy, traumatising, or angering issues disguised as”tea serving” matters, don’t.

Now, I know you probably don’t want to be rude so you may politely say, “I don’t wish to talk about this”. On the flip side, you can just walk them out. Physically take yourself away from the conversation and the space. You can also tell them that your business is not theirs to know. Again, I know it’s easier said than done.

In all realness, there has to be a way for us to educate our pot-stirring and button-pushing family members that their foolishness is not appreciated and will not be tolerated. Regardless of age and level of the family or friendship tree, some matters require delicacy or total detours. You don’t even need to give a reason for your preferences either.

Instead, let’s talk about the year that was in general terms, what we’ve learned and what we hope to see in the coming year. Focus on the good. If you must speak on the triggering topics, there’s a way in which you do that.

Steer clear of the judgement, the toxic positivity, the condescending tones and speak life and positivity into people.

Of course, some people will say that you need thicker skin or that you’re too sensitive. Let them. You know how some topics and conversations make you feel. Own that.

What I would say is that, the triggering tea-stirring convos sometimes hold truth. Take some of what is said with a couple grains of salt and hold yourself accountable in your own ways.

Another thing: please try not to take anything personally. This is especially true when the words being said are coming from someone you wouldn’t take advice from or give advice to.

Another thing, if you don’t want to be around certain people in the holiday season, you don’t need to be. You’re not obligated to torture yourself like that. If, for whatever reason, you have no choice, set your boundaries from early and enjoy the space without focusing on this person who triggers you.

There’s so much more that could be said, but I think you get it.

Read between these lines at least twice as you wrap 2022 and look towards 2023. A gem or two may be buried there for you to find.

Signed,

The Suburban Girl JA

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