How to have a Conflict and Stress Free Christmas Holiday Season
A 3 Step System to a Conflict and Stress Free Christmas Holiday Season
The holidays are upon us, and images of peace, love, and harmony are popping up everywhere. It's a time for great joy, good feelings, and family togetherness. Right?
Well what happens when Uncle Jim comes to visit, gets drunk, and breaks the “truce” and you bite and the war is on. Or perhaps you start to feel overwhelmed by the expectations put on you, angry no one else is helping, and you lose it! Or Christmas is a season that brings back unpleasant memories, your emotions are triggered by other peoples behavior and the stress and tension becomes unhealthy.
Here is our 3-step system for a Conflict and Stress Free Christmas Holiday Season.
Step #1: Be Intentional with an Attitude of Gratitude.
Coca-Cola has been marketing happiness and gratitude for over 85 years that began with the Christmas icon, Santa Claus and today they enjoy 94% global brand awareness . This comes from a company that reportedly spends over 4 billion dollars on marketing; I am pretty sure they understand the power of gratitude and its benefits.
So lets look at the benefits of gratitude. Research tells us that when we are grateful our cortisol levels, (our stress response) are decreased and our serotonin levels (our mood regulator) and our oxytocin levels (our bonding and trust) are increased. And to help us keep being grateful, when we are grateful we experience an increase in our dopamine level, (our reward transmitter), and it says; “lets do that again!”
No wonder coke sells happiness and gratitude along with caffeine; it works!
Be intentional this year with an attitude of gratitude; start each day with something you’re grateful for and reach out and encourage someone your grateful for; it will help build healthy relationships.
Step #2: Be Wise with your Wisdom
Wisdom is something that may seem odd as a catalyst to a conflict free Christmas Holiday Season; let me show you why. Research has shown that your IQ, your intellectual intelligence, is responsible for 15% of your success; financial and relational. 85 percent of your success is due to your EQ, your emotional intelligence that is your personality and ability to communicate, negotiate, and lead.
Being wise with your wisdom is about knowing yourself better so you can relate to others better. You need to understand how your emotions can inform you for great outcomes this Christmas Holiday Season or take you hostage and incite conflict.
Be intentional this year with wise wisdom, emotional wisdom, that will help you be a part of the solution and not inflame the problem. A great EQ tool to get (for free) this Christmas is Gary Chapman’s 5 Love Languages. You can complete their diagnostic on line or download it for completion at http://www.5lovelanguages.com/ This diagnostic is perfect for understanding ourselves and others when it comes to how we appreciate and love each other in relationships. Wise wisdom indeed!
Step #3: Embrace the Art of Curiosity.
My understanding is that felines, whether it's the Christmas Holiday Season or not, have 9 chances to engage curiosity and then it becomes fatal; fortunately that is not the case for you and I! How often do we approach a situation with an opinion that is rooted in judgment and the response we get is defensive at best inflammatory at worst. You might relate to the unspoken Christmas truce that says “we will suspend conflict over Christmas” but inevitably someone expresses their opinion and the underlying judgment ensures the truce is off and the conflict is on and the stress on the way up!
What if we lead with our impression rather than our opinion? With an attitude of gratitude and not being taken hostage by our emotions, what if we asked great questions that started with curiosity; I wonder? When we lead with our opinion it is about what we do; performance. When we lead with our impression it is about who we are; relationship.
Be intentional with your relationships this Christmas Holiday Season by embracing the art of curiosity; asking great questions that start with you and leading with impression.
So there you have it; our 3-step system for a Conflict and Stress Free Christmas Holiday Season! “Tis the season to be jolly not a season to be conflicts folly.”
We would love to hear your stories of how you successfully deal with conflict and stress this season and how are 3 step system helped you be a part of a prosperous and joyful Christmas Holiday Season.
Michael Walker - Head Coach - Legendary Coaching