The festive season is often a time of joy and celebration. It's a time when we come together with loved ones, indulge in our favourite foods, and make memories. However, it's also a time when our boundaries can be pushed and tested in ways they usually aren't. It's crucial to set and maintain healthy boundaries during the Christmas holidays to ensure you stay balanced, happy and mentally well. I have written this blog as I too have often struggled with saying no when it seems like there is just too much on my plate at Christmas (not an intentional food pun... but it worked).
Read on for some helpful tips that I believe might help you effectively manage boundaries this Christmas.
Boundaries Apply To Everyone
It's important to remember that boundaries apply to everyone, not just colleagues, friends, or acquaintances. This includes family. It can be challenging because we often have deep emotional ties and history with our family members. With that said, that doesn't mean you shouldn't have boundaries with them. It's crucial to establish what you're comfortable with, what your limits are, and ensure that they're respected by everyone, including family.
Setting Boundaries Means You Won’t be Able to Make Everyone Happy All The Time
This one is for all my people pleasers (you know who you are). One of the main things to remember when setting boundaries is that you can't please everyone all the time, and that's okay. Your mental and emotional wellbeing should be your priority, and if setting certain boundaries means upsetting someone, it's a sacrifice worth making. The people who respect and care about you will understand your need for boundaries and respect them.
Take Your Planned Time O ff and Stay True to Your Out of O ffice
The Christmas holidays are a time for rest and recuperation. Don't feel guilty about taking your planned time off and sticking to your 'out of o ffice'. It's your time to unwind, relax, and recharge your
batteries. It won't do you or the people around you any good if you're running on empty. So, take that time off and enjoy it fully.
Factor in Some Alone Time to Recharge
While the holidays are a time for socializing and spending time with loved ones, it's also essential to factor in some alone time. It's a chance to recharge, reflect on the year gone by, and prepare for the year ahead. It's not selfish to want some time to yourself; it's a crucial part of maintaining your mental wellbeing.
Setting Boundaries Ahead of Time is a Good Idea
It's a good idea to think about your boundaries before the Christmas holiday period starts. Reflect on what worked and what didn't work last year, and use this to inform your boundaries this year. Communicate these boundaries with your loved ones so they know what to expect and can respect your needs.
Remember Boundaries Can be Flexible
Lastly, remember that boundaries are not set in stone. They can be flexible. If you find a certain boundary isn't working, or is causing more stress than it's relieving, it's okay to reassess and adjust it. The most important thing is that your boundaries serve you and contribute to your well-being.
I really do hope this blog may bring a sense of peace or clarity to anyone out there who may be feeling anxious, overwhelmed or even not so much in the 'Christmas spirit'. If there are any questions I can answer to help you on your journey towards overall well-being - please feel free to reach me directly on firstname.lastname@example.org however, please note - I will be enjoying my own 'out of office period' and taking some much needed time. I will respond upon my return to work.
Wishing you and your loved ones a very peaceful Christmas 2023 and best wishes for the New Year 2024.
Thank you for reading this blog.
God bless you,