Protect Your Relationship During The Holidays

Here’s a not-so-jolly statistic: Research tells us that most couples will argue five times a day between now and New Year’s Day. So, I thought I’d pass on some expert advice I found to help you preserve your relationship:

1. Be willing to compromise. In one survey, the top reason for holiday disagreements was where to spend Christmas. Couples counselors say the best way to find a compromise is to have a plan that is fair and equitable. So, you have a few choices. If the in-laws live far away you might alternate years. Or you could split Christmas day in half. There are plenty of options, but the key is to get as close to 50-50 as you can or you will build monumental resentment.

2. Let go of at least one little thing every day. Howard Markman wrote Fighting for Your Marriage. And he says that hectic schedules and rising financial pressure magnify minor offenses – so one little bickering episode can turn into a full blown argument and even threatening comments. Things you wouldn’t even notice at another time of the year soon become the enemy of your relationship. So, take a deep breath. Recognize that your relationship is under attack from the holidays and then hold your fire!

3. Skip all the crazy shopping and try to spend more time together. A recent study found that the people who said they enjoyed the holidays the most were the ones who spent spent the least amount of time worrying about buying gifts. So, try to make personalized gifts as much as possible. Even a framed photo is a great strategy. And remember this: Research tells us that the two things that bring the most joy to people during the holidays are being with loved ones and family traditions.

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