The holiday season should bring happiness. Unfortunately, as we approach Thanksgiving and Christmas stress levels tend to rise due to the chaos of Black Friday sales, crowded parking lots and stores, packed schedules of holiday parties to attend, and the dreaded last-minute shopping trips. These circumstances can really lead to people being wound a bit too tight.
So, I thought I would help out with some tips on how to be less offended (or less defensive) this holiday season.
- Take a deep breath.
I believe so many heated exchanges could be avoided by simply taking a deep breath before reacting. Bring that racing heartbeat down and go from there.
- Don’t take everything personally.
Stressed out people tend to take their emotions out on others. And there are some people out there who are rude in general, to everyone, not just you. Unless YOU actually did something intentionally that caused their anger, don’t take it personally. When we take things too personally, we tend to get defensive, and that only makes things worse.
- Be patient.
Standing in line huffing and complaining isn’t going to make the situation more pleasant for you or anyone around you. Stand there quietly and think of things you are grateful for instead.
Sometimes you make mistakes too. Instead of getting defensive when someone calls you out, apologize. Don’t yell back. Don’t give excuses. Just apologize.
You would be surprised how many altercations are avoided by simply smiling at someone instead of scowling. Smiles can temporarily calm some of the grumpiest people. I’ve seen it happen. Give it a try!
Bottom line, if you want a happier holiday season around the general public don’t make it all about you. Realize that people don’t always mean to take things out on others and don’t always realize what’s going on around them. If we all focused more on being less offended and more compassionate, we would be a lot happier.
And if you need some extra help, keep a calming essential oil with you. My go-to blend is Stress Away!