Do you find that the holidays can put a strain on your relationship? The holidays can get crazy busy with a whole lot of added responsibilities and stress. Here are a few tips for maintaining your relationship zen:
1) Make space for quality time together.
You’ll be out and about gift and food shopping, trying to make sure you have everyone and everything on your list. You’ll also have what feels like endless Christmas parties and family get-togethers. Connecting with your SO in the midst of all of that can start to feel tricky. I encourage you to take the time to have a date night, even if that date night includes wrapping gifts together or cooking for those parties and get-togethers. The emphasis is on the quality of your time together and not so much on what you’re doing.
2) Lean on each other for help.
You might be stressed about getting the decorations for your Christmas party or maybe work is kicking your butt. End of year work deadlines are looming and there just isn’t enough time in the day. Let your SO help! You might be surprised at how much you can get done together. You can reduce stress, knock out your list, and maybe even steal a few kisses in between.
3) Be each other’s emotional support for the hard things.
The holidays are full of joy, celebration, and family. With that also comes interesting family dynamics, if you catch my drift. Maybe you can’t stand it when your uncle comes to Christmas dinner with a full-on political argument ready. Or maybe your Aunt Susan won’t leave you alone about when you’re going to have kids, because your eggs are going to shrivel up…or is that just me? You know what can really help in those situations? Your boo being right by your side. You can laugh with each other about the frustrating things later and support each other in the more difficult moments. If you’ve lost a loved one, you know exactly what I mean. Having someone there to be sad with or to honor a loved one’s memory with is crucial. Let each other know that you’re not alone.
4) Remind each other it’s okay to set boundaries.
As fun as holiday traditions are – sometimes they cause stress. Remember that the ones important to keep around are the ones that bring holiday cheer – not additional stress. If you and your partner are struggling to fit in all the travel and familial obligations, don’t forget to remind each other that it is okay to set boundaries when it comes to holiday travel, holiday gift budgets, etc.
5) Put yourself in your partner’s shoes.
Find yourself in a disagreement amongst the hustle and bustle of the holiday season? You’re not alone. Many couples feel this stress. Maybe you grew up with different traditions, have contrasting expectations for the holiday season, or set your holiday gift budgets a bit differently. Just remember, we all have the best of intentions and it’s best to presume positive intent. Just take a moment to put yourself in your partner’s shoes, and I think you’ll find a common ground.
The major component to keeping your relationship stress-free this holiday season is to just have fun together. Don’t let stress get you or your SO down! Create new memories together and just laugh with each other. Nothing is worth stealing your joy!