Take a deep breath and prepare for the upcoming holiday season. It’s a time of merriment for most people, though not for everyone. Holidays can amplify empty feelings in the lives of those who don’t feel much to celebrate. They can also be a burden for you if family and friends pile in when you hadn’t intended to host guests this year. If you can’t just say, “No, I’m not entertaining this holiday,” then at least limit your stress by making it clear that things are going to be different this year. Holiday visitors can host themselves.
You’re Not On Vacation
If you hadn’t made plans to take off for the holidays, there’s no obligation for you to do so now. Your guests have to understand that they‘ll be on their own and that you fully expect them to take responsibility for their own amusement and entertainment. Of course, you can help them learn about the sights in your town and join them for an activity here and there. But the work of scheduling fun things to do and see during their visit rests solely with them.
You’re Not Running A Resort
Above all else, remember that you won’t have the time and energy to wine and dine everyone as you normally do. Even if you cut back on your work schedule to get home early to spend time with your guests, that’s not the same as being off and having plenty of time to plan meals, shop, and prepare niceties for everyone. Your friends and family have to fend for themselves this visit, and should not expect to receive meals and amenities like they’re staying at a hotel. If they visit every year, they already know how to get to the supermarket and restaurants, and can figure out how to work the washing machine and dishwasher when they need fresh supplies. Nix the temptation to run yourself ragged doing these things for them when they’re perfectly able to do them for themselves. And, expect your guests to pitch in to prepare the special holiday meals and festivities.
Roll Up The “All Are Welcome” Mat
While your family and friends may love you for welcoming everyone to your home even if some have to squeeze in and camp out on the floor, the additional hubbub will only add to your stress this year. Keep the numbers manageable to minimize unexpected demands, chaos, and cost. Reassure those you have to turn away that they can visit at another time when you’re off and have time to manage a larger crowd. Don’t try to accommodate everyone this year.
Holiday guests can bring great fun to your home, but make sure they understand that there are times when you’re not free to host them as attentively as you normally do ― particularly those who are inviting themselves for a visit. Let them enjoy the great location and accommodations you’re giving them, and help them do the rest on their own.
Enjoy These Other Success Article
Reprint Policy: You are welcome to reprint this article for your personal use and to share with friends and associates.
Contact Dr. Webster to obtain permission for any commercial purposes.
About the Author:
Dr. E. Carol Webster is a clinical psychologist consultant specializing in Success Psychology.
She is author of the book for those dealing with the stress of success ―
Success Management: How to Get to the Top and Keep Your Sanity Once You Get There,
The Fear of Success: Stop It From Stopping You! ―
the book to help you overcome fears that may be holding you back in your life and career
The Private Practice of Clinical Psychology in: Voices of Historical & Contemporary Black American Pioneers
Money Smarts: Put More Profit In Your Private Practice!
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Clinical Psychology Consulting
Mailing Address: 7027 West Broward Boulevard, #262 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33317