How to avoid fighting on Christmas


Do we lose all Empathy around Christmas?

Martha is looking forward to the holidays. Every year, she starts to prepare early. From the finest decorations to recipes that tickle your taste buds in the most delightful way: Martha takes Christmas seriously. 

What she loves most is that it's the only time of the year when the whole family gets together. Even her parents fly in from Florida. 

She looks forward to her favorite holiday every year. Sadly, also every year what is supposed to be the festival of love turns into a huge fight. 

Last year was extremely bad: 

  • Martha was mad at everyone. She prepared for weeks and spent 2.5 days in the kitchen but nobody, really NOBODY, appreciated her hard work. Instead, everyone was complaining

  • Maurice, Martha's son, didn't hide how much he hated the whole thing. He was the only one of his friends who was forced to stay at home. All the others met for possibly the greatest party of the year. Nobody likes to be blackmailed. (In Martha's defense: she had no other choice than threatening that she wouldn't buy Maurice the car she promised for his 18th birthday)

  • Erin was crying for hours. She wanted a PlayStation. But her uncool parents bought an Xbox. An Xbox 360. Where did they even find it? In the "free stuff" section of Craigslist?

  • Martha's parents were seriously unhappy. They are not the youngest and traveling is exhausting. They came all the way from Florida to spend quality time with their daughter and grandchildren. The grandchildren were in a devilish mood while her daughter spent all of the time in the kitchen. They were stuck with Bill whom they never liked. Who`s Bill?

  • Bill, Martha's husband, has had it with Christmas. All he wants is a bit of silence and peace. Week-in, week-out he rushes from meeting to meeting and the last thing he wants to do in the little time he has to himself is entertaining grumpy in-laws, juggle ill-tempered kids and listen to horrible Christmas music

Would you like more Christmas music? Follow the link at the end of the post and order your free album with Christmas songs. 

around Christmas

Why do we argue and fight on holidays?

Not just around Christmas, but also on vacations and other holidays: Often what is supposed to be a wonderful time turns into a stressful event. 

Some of the nicest people I know turn into selfish monster who want to force their idea of an ideal vacation/holiday onto others. 


There are several reasons that lead to this, for instance:

  • Overblown expectations
  • We're not used to spend so much time together

How to avoid fighting on holidays

The most important tip: Stay emphatic. Just like the rest of the year. Also:

  1. Don't expect too much. You will not get along better with people than the rest of the year

  2. Try not to force your idea of a perfect Christmas onto others. Everyone should be able to contribute their ideas and who doesn't want to participate shouldn't be forced to

  3. Avoid fundamental debates. It's unlikely that you will find consent about a topic you disagreed on all year long at the Christmas table

  4.  If possible, split the work. Everyone could contribute and be responsible for a part of the Christmas festival

  5. Don't force people to spend hours and hours together if they don't want to. It will only lead to arguments

  6. Don't force them to do things they hate. For example: if your kids don't want to sing Christmas songs - don't make them

  7. Don't overdo it. It doesn't have to be a 6-course menu. Consider preparing something festive but simple so that you are not already stressed out when it begins

  8. Gifts are supposed to make people happy. If someone doesn't like their present, they should be allowed to say so. Keep in mind: It's not a rejection of your person

Procrastination around Christmas

An interesting phenomenon is procrastination around the Christmas. Are you interested in some effective tips how to eliminate it? 

I wrote an article for you about this last year and, if you prefer, you can also listen to the audio edition. 

Article: Killing time around Christmas

Last but not least (unless you ... like me ... dislike Christmas songs): You can order your free Christmas album HERE: Christmas Special: Free Album

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Killing time around Christmas

Time is all we have

"Time is a game played beautifully by children." Heraclitus
Procrastination around ChristmasGerman author Erich Kastner said: Remember the 5th commandment, don´t kill your time. Wait, that doesn't sound right. It should say: "Thou shalt not kill". Is this rewording just a catchy phrase or is a deeper meaning hidden behind it? In the end of the day, time is all we have left before we die. Lifetime. Killing time is like killing a little bit of yourself. I am probably guilty of some killing of time myself. I love the picture above this line. It looks so fragile and precious and is a great metaphor for the lifetime we have to spend. Killing time is when you do things that do not really have a meaning. No significance. Binge watching a poorly made crime show for instance. Couldn´t  we use our time better? Maybe go to college? Helping a good cause? Killing time is also if you are not in the Now. If your thoughts wander around in the future and you make your actions contingent of future development you are putting off the real life. Like better weather, having more time, money and so on and so forth. Until then we stay in a relationship that is not working or a job we hate. Or we do not take the steps necessary to get closer to our goals. There is nothing wrong with enjoying a computer game (guilty!) or a show on tv from time to time. But only if you enjoy it with your full presence and if you stay aware that you are living Now.

Procrastination around Christmas

December is the time of the year where people tend to put off things and procrastinate the most. "I´ll do that next year." "Only one week until Christmas." If you think about it: deduct the public holidays and you end up with as many working days as in February. So why would we be less productive in Christmas? A time to relax? A needed break? Putting things off is not relaxing. Again, make sure that you use your lifetime wisely and enjoy what you are doing (or not doing) with every cell of your body in the Here and Now. Some Christmas procrastinators tell themselves "after new year´s eve I will do things differently". If you live in the Now you will never find a need for new year´s resolutions. It´s 5 to Christmas and you have already received your present from the Universe: The gift of life. Lifetime.

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