Survive your Family

Does your extended family cause you anger and anguish or is it a source of strength? Not everyone has a close-knit family who can playfully tease about childhood mishaps and move seamlessly into dispensing wise advice without judgment regardless of what you see in the movies or commercials.

It is true when I say that a lot of individuals do not have a good relationship with family but have to learn how to deal with them during holidays. It is essential to note that your go-to strategies may not be enough since the holidays heighten emotions and nostalgia.

Try adding these tips to your survival toolbox if you’re unsure of how to face the family gathering this year.

A Sense of Humor

Survive your FamilyTake a metaphorical step back and laugh when it all gets to be too much. Just pretend that you are a character in a movie or in a dark comedy, it might be helpful. During difficult times this exercise may help you reframe your current situation and help you see the humor. Do not just start laughing out loud.

A Sense of Timing

Take the first steps towards building a better family gathering with an improved sense of timing. Identify the moment things took a turn for the worse by going back to the past. You will be able to identify triggers through this exercise and escape in time. To avoid major headaches you can prioritize to work on your sense.

A Sense of Understanding

The old saying about walking a mile in someone else’s shoes counts for family members too. It doesn’t mean you know them as adults regardless of the fact that you may share a bloodline or childhood experiences. Try to remember your relatives may be hurting too and do your best to extend a little bit of understanding to them. Just like you can’t accept abuse from family members, giving a little grace to your relatives won’t hurt either.

A Sense of Love

Find that connection between you and family and hold on it tightly. Let the love reminds you of the connection that you have with those people. If that doesn’t work you have no option but to put self-love first. A sense of love can save you from being hurt by others and at the same time serve as a reminder of why you are putting yourself through another family gathering.

You will approach family gatherings with a better mindset or an improved escape plan if you gain a better understanding of your relatives and the underlying complexities of your dynamics. These tools will help you survive your family and make your heart whole regardless of them giving you a renewed sense of affection for your relatives or a profound sense of appreciation for your “found family” of friends.

How to Live Happy and Contented Lives?

Happiness is a now you feel it, now you don’t emotion. I know this from personal experience and from hearing of the experiences of others. Sometimes I’m very happy, other times, sad, joyful, contented, frustrated, and sometimes very neutral.

Several years ago I had no reference point for the word happy. I knew technically the meaning of the word, however the experience eluded me. Joy I could do, happy for some reason, no.

One day during a workshop the word happy was demonstrated to me with much laughter from the audience. Now I not only get happy but remember it also as a fun experience.

There are many small things that can make me happy as well as give me endless joy. I’ve listed seven simple ways toward experiencing a happy moment, but first check you have a reference point to the word happy. Find out what happy really means to you?

1. Remember or create a happy or ‘awesome’ moment. When you live the experience of happy your mind and body will remember. Feel the happiness in all parts of you, expand this feeling if need be. Practice this daily. To find the awesome-ness of everyday life, check out these two awesome fan pages that you can join today!

2. Access the Present moment. Notice what happens to you when you’re totally focused on a comedy show on television, when you listen to light-hearted music or when you dance – even if it’s on your own. I sometimes groove to a tune in my office when no-one’s looking  it makes me feel good, cool, gives me a break from what I’m doing and I laugh at myself!

3. Invite friends over for some play time. Organise paper, crayons, paint, and coloured pencils, whatever you can think of and do some drawings or paintings. You could also ask each person to bring along a plate of food.

4. Spend time with nature, go for a walk down the beach or park; observe wildlife in your area or visit a plant nursery. Notice your mood when amongst the spirit of nature.

5. Take something with you that gives you great pleasure such as a book, journal for writing or your MP3 player and sit and Be under the canopies of trees for a few hours.

6. Learn something totally new such as another language; pottery, drawing or painting or start your meditation, personal or spiritual development program. You are only ever limited by your own imagination.

7. Join a club or group that you have an interest in. You can then expand your friendship base with other like-minded souls.

With any of the above activities assess what and how you are feeling as well as where you feel the emotion and how much are you laughing, grinning, or smiling?

Remember them totally by living the experience and you will then be able to recall this memory when you want to.

Include to memory your experience colors, smells, sounds and tastes all the better for remembering your happy time with.

Quiet time spent alone can open the door to the possibility of connection to that most amazing and magical part of you that is your true self, the spirit within.

From my experience the key to a happy life begins with remembering who you are, know what gives you enjoyment, be present, and know that regardless of your circumstances no one can take away your thoughts or dreams, they are yours to keep for as long as you wish.