For a lot of people, this time of year means more time spent with family. Some people look forward to this part of the Christmas season. Others…not so much. Regardless where your family time falls on the crazy/stressful spectrum, I’m sure we can all agree that not everyone at our family gatherings is just like us. I know it sounds incredibly obvious, but is important to remind ourselves regularly (and especially at this time of year) that not everyone else thinks like us, processes information like us, has the same motivations as we do, or receives joy or energy from the same sources that we do.
If you are a Yellow….
Remember that not everyone functions well at high volume. And I know this may come as a shock to some of you, but brace yourself for this truth: not everyone wants to hear every one of your stories. While a strength of the Yellow personality is being fun and bringing joy and energy to a group, watch for clues that others may need a “break” from you for a while. Don’t tell every story or joke that pops into your head. Ask others how they are doing and what their plans are for the new year. And don’t forget to listen.
If you are a Blue….
Accept that not everything will be perfect and not all holiday celebrations are going to be quiet and solemn. Prepare yourself for noisy gatherings, if that is your reality with your family, and schedule yourself some down time before and after. If you notice flaws in the decor or cooking or other areas, keep your negative thoughts to yourself. Be positive and appreciative to all who help contribute. Try to liven up and participate in games or activities with others, even if just for small periods at a time.
If you are a Red…
Remember that you do not have to be in charge. Accept that the gift opening or buffet style meal may not take place in the most efficient way possible. Be okay with that. If you have a suggestion to make, offer it in a polite and inoffensive manner. Don’t get upset if the group doesn’t always go along with your ideas (even if you know your way would be better). Reds need purpose, so stay focused on why you are gathered with family in the first place.
If you are a Green…
Enjoy. Don’t be too late, because people will want to see you. If you’re family is fairly high on the crazy scale, the Greens are often needed to keep the peace and balance out the high strung/high energy individuals also there. And even if your natural tendency is to procrastinate, don’t! If you wait until the last minute to do your Christmas shopping it will likely not be a peaceful experience and thereby robbing you of some of your joy. Plan ahead, and then relax and enjoy the party.
(Yes, this is a re-post from last year. It’s all still true.)