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Don’t Let Holiday Expectations Ruin Your Marriage

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Tis the season for decorating the house with twinkle lights, putting up the tree, baking goodies, picking out gifts, and attending holiday parties. It’s also the most stressful time of year. You feel pressured to make sure everything is perfect, try out those recipes in the magazines, make the foods his mother always made, and be the best-dressed person at the party. In the midst of trying to live up to all of those expectations, you can make yourself and your spouse miserable. 4 things to keep in mind to keep your expectations in check.

It’s Not about Things.  No one has ever created the perfect holiday Opt to focus on relationships rather than things this holiday. No one will remember that you made the prettiest wreath on the block, but they will remember that you did not go to their holiday concert because you were too exhausted to make it.

It’s Not About the Party. You need to prioritize your marriage and family over extended family or party guests.  For instance, if you know your child needs a nap in the afternoon to ensure that they won’t get overtired and cranky, that needs to be the priority. Establish the expectation when the party or event begins, and then honor that priority by politely excusing yourself and asking your spouse to host for a while so you can take care of the kids. 

It’s Not About the Food. Most holidays revolve around a meal or appetizers or sweets of some kindIf you are in the kitchen the whole season, you are missing important moments with your husband and kids. There are so many delicious pre-prepared sweets, sides etc. that you can pick up at the grocery store to make more time for enjoying the holidays with family. Skip the cookie baking and go ice-skating with the family.

It’s Not about Keeping Up Traditions. Every family is different and has their own holiday traditions. Accept that. Your family always opens presents on Christmas morning and then has a big brunch but your spouse’s family opens presents on Christmas Eve after the Christmas Eve service and dinner. You and your spouse want to open presents Christmas morning with the kids at your house. How do you manage it all? Talk to all the relatives involved and tell them your plans for your family’s Christmas and then ask when they would like to get together to celebrate with you and yours. Protect your own family holiday time.

Holidays are meant to be spent with your spouse, family and friends. They will be much more enjoyable if you manage your expectations.

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