Difficult relatives can either spoil your holidays or be a challenge to you. The choice is yours. Many family gatherings are ruined because of a thoughtless person. If it is your home you may have more control over the situation, but even if you are at someone else’s house here are some ways to make a bad situation better:
- The person who won’t stop talking – This may very well be someone who is very lonely. They probably live alone and do not get a chance to talk to other people. They are starved for attention and will just keep talking, seemingly without taking a breath. The best thing you can do for this person is to just listen. If there are others who will share this listening with you, you can take turns leaving their side and they will get to talk as long as they wish. Try asking them about something that you are also interested in to give them a chance to share their experiences with others.
- The person who has to be right – This is someone who may be angry or unhappy at their job. They are probably used to their boss telling them what to do and not letting them to make any real decisions. They feel like a child in an adult world. The best way to handle this person is to praise them. They will beam like a young child when you compliment them.
- The person who has to be the center of attention – This may be someone who is used to being in control or someone who likes to be in control. For this type of person, ask their opinion on something. They will enjoy the chance to tell you what they think and may even have some great ideas.
The key to surviving the holidays or any other occasions with people that are not your friends is to make sure that you do not allow the situation to stress you out. If you need quiet time or want to get away from them, take a walk or a nap. Even a fifteen minute break away from people that annoy you can make the rest of the day go much more smoothly.