“Everything that irritates us about others can lead to an understanding of ourselves.” Carl Jung
So you will be spending the holidays with an annoying family member you don’t like.
You think it will be better this year. You won’t let them get to you.
As soon as you see this annoying person, you tighten up. You look away, then remember you are trying to be polite. You smile, say hello, engage in enough small talk so that you can avoid them the rest of the night without appearing rude. It works for a little while…until the wine kicks in and the comments come out….
Trumps latest political tirade. Your son’s behavior. Your daughter’s weight gain. The passive aggressive bragging about why they are better than you. The off-color joke. The rude comment.
You feel yourself starting to lose it. Promising yourself you won’t do this again. This is the last time.
This holiday tradition happens in many homes around the country. But the best way to deal with it is before the event begins.
Instead of avoiding the issue and pretending like everything will be fine, use your past experience to predict and plan for the future.
I know it seems like THAT person is the annoying one and if they would just behave appropriately, then you could enjoy the family gathering. But THAT PERSON isn’t the problem.
The reason we get so annoyed is because of who we become when we are with them.
We don’t like tensing up and “making nice” when we don’t feel like it. It’s easy to get annoyed with ourselves for not saying the right thing at the right time. We wouldn’t be so bothered by them, if we acted in a way we admired. The reason that person gets under our skin is because of how we act when we’re around them.
The best way to stay true to yourself, no matter who is around or what they are saying, is to give other people permission to be who they are.
Give your uncle permission to think Trump is the lord and savior of our country.
Give your aunt permission to make passive aggressive comments about your unruly children.
Allow your Dad to raise his eyebrows at your spending habits.
Trust your Mom to make comments about your weight.
Give your brother permission to brag about his expensive splurges.
Expect your boss to make inappropriate comments about your co-worker.
Write down everything ridiculous thing you think might happen at your holiday party. (Doing this with a friend doubles the fun!)
Then watch the party unfold and your brain stay calm. This activity keeps you from arguing and getting annoyed “He’s an idiot, She shouldn’t say that, that is NOT OK!” to feeling satisfied, “I knew he was going to say that”.
This creates a win-win scenario for you. You either get to be right, or you get to have a peaceful evening without getting triggered by idiots.
You get to decide what you think, how you feel, and how you act. When we spend time with annoying people, it doesn’t feel like we have control over this. Allowing other people to be idiots, allows us to be ourselves, and stay in control.
If you struggle to stay calm and true to yourself around certain family members, schedule a free discovery call and let’s get you reconnected with your higher self, no matter who is around you.