Tips and Thoughts on How to Survive Christmas, New Year’s, and the In-Laws
Guest post by Bruce Sallan
I’ve got a weekly TweetChat (on Twitter) that I founded and host – often with guest-hosts – every Thursday evening from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. PT. Recently I invited our participants to share their tips for surviving the holidays. The idea was simply to compile the ten best and make a column out of them.
But, there was a problem. There were so many tips and ideas, that choosing the best was impossible. Several general themes were present in our discussion and you can read the transcript if you want to see all the 1,200 or so tweets. It became clear that so many families are fractured in one way or another that just the organization and coordination of holiday events can be stressful. It also was clear that we all believed our job was to focus on our kids, rather than ourselves and do our best to let go of any resentments, past or present.
So here’s a summary of ideas from the #dadchat conversation on Twitter:
- Always side with mom since she was the one that took care of us
- One tip, don’t tell the in-laws they can stop by anytime
- It’s all about the stocking in our house…we all open them one by one with tons of small wacky gifts…and Chocolate (bacon!).
- Holiday Tip: Attend fam dinners w/ mindset of being entertained, not triggered. Imagine every inapp remark as fodder 4 Ur next blog.
- Lose the idea of what’s best for you and your current relationship and consider what’s best for the kids. Lose SoMe too! [Note from Bruce: SoMe is Social Media]
- Holiday Tips: Have an answer prepared 4 triggering remarks U know you’ll hear, i.e. “so when R U getting married?”
- Avoid being the GOTO person for Christmas Trees.
- My tip is to not get sucked into the madness of a perfect holiday.
- Me and my family often don’t have alot at Christmas and instead of giving gifts to each other we donate them.
- We do not sweat the season…we just enjoy the day. For us, it is a day to enjoy each other not the gifts.
- The most fun is in the kitchen cooking all the yummy Christmas cookies – and eating them!
- Great aid for the holidays: Watch “It’s a Wonderful Life”
- kids will remember the time you spent with them more than gifts during the holidays, make memories.
- Every year tradition on Christmas Eve, I ring a bell for each kid/grandkid – this year 2 great grands.
- Write a note to person of why you chose a gift. Story behind it creates value and meaning.
- My family takes children to help w/meal for homeless on Thanksgiving and invite homeless for Christmas.
- We always have fashion shows, put on every item of clothing as we receive it, so I remember when Mom bought me a bra lol.
- Check in with people you haven’t heard from in a while.
- Make it about your children first. Everything else…parties etc…fit that in only after.
- Since I’m a kid of divorce, I’d say please make it about the kid. It helps heal the loss.
- Make it about people not things.
- Put your camera/cell-phone down. Focus on enjoying the moment, not capturing it.
- Have fun, relax and think like a kid, get on the floor with them and play! Forgive…
- Holidays are about love and family. Remember the reason for the season.
Wow, just curating and choosing these tweets made me realize how important community, family, and learning from one another can be. This is what I love about Social Media. Please add your ideas in the comment section below. There’s no limit to what we can do to support one another!
By Bruce Sallan
A Dad’s Point of View