A Holiday Survival Guide

The holidays are here! Some folks are elated about the chance to catch up with family. Others wonder...How can I survive the season without packing on 10 pounds from emotional eating? To answer both camps...How can we be our best selves?

  • Manage Expectations. Ask yourself: Is this a visit or a vacation? Have you been looking forward to this trip for months? Sounds like a vacation. Did you put off searching for a flight until the last minute and take a swig of wine before you clicked "Purchase"? If so, this sounds like a family obligation a.k.a. a visit. Be realistic with yourself about what you want and what you can realistically can get out of this trip. If it's a visit, you may have fun, but don't expect the relief and rejuvenation that can come with a vacation.
  • Don't Just Pack Your Clothes, Bring Your Routine too. You work long hours, but it's bearable because you 1. go to SoulCycle three times a week; 2. meditate every morning; 3. spend hours in your workshop or 4. always pair Netflix and Chill with a good Bourbon. Sometimes we visit family and revert back to our former, emo selves. Sleeping in late. Making meals out of Cheezits and beer. Or just plain ol' hiding. But just because the setting changed, don't forget about the routines that keep you happy and sane. Identify gyms, meditation centers and spas close to where you'll be. Bring your arts and crafts with you. And share that nice bottle of Bourbon with your family.
  •  Set Clear Boundaries. If certain topics are off limits, let your family know what they are and why. Decide ahead of time what you'll do if those boundaries aren't respected. A walk? A trip to the movies? Phone a friend?
  • Try Conflict Coaching. If you feel completely overwhelmed by the holiday season, consider a couple of conflict coaching sessions to help you tease out the issues, your feelings, and your options.