#3 - Use gratitude to sooth irritationDec 14, 2021
Fundamentally we are social creatures and we thrive in a tribe. Christmas, possibly this year more than ever, is an important time for connecting with this tribe.
However, we can't pretend that these gatherings always goes smoothly. Be it the stress to make the occasion perfect, lack of sleep, effect of the alcohol, or difficulty in finding our "role" in the re-formed tribe (think grown up children back at parents home, different parenting styles, friends with opposing ideas) irritation rises and tempers can become short. It can also lead to a lot of anxiety and fear in anticipation of the event.
Remember what people bring to your life or happy times you have spent with them in advance
Write a mental (or real) "Gratitude Christmas Card" for each person
What 3-4 things make you happy to have these people in your life?
How do you (or could you) let them know this?
Having this list fresh in your mind help curb an over-reaction in the moment.
There are also a lot of studies to show the benefits of cultivating an attitude of gratitude - maintaining positive mood, greater emotional wellbeing, lower tendency to dwell on negatives or stressful events, better relationships, and better health.
This resilience grows over time with practice, so this is a great time to start.
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