The festive season can often be stressful as families often end up spending a lot of time together and sometimes it can bring about tensions. If you’ve been invited to an event over Christmas, here’s some advice on making the most of it and keeping tensions to a minimum.
- If you have children, go over manners and house rules with them so they know how they should behave.
- Remember, you can’t control other people’s behaviour so control your own. If someone is likely to push your buttons, tell yourself before you go to the event that you’re not going to be a part of that… keep them at a distance and enjoy the company of the people you do get along with.
- Avoid serious discussions. If someone starts going on about an inappropriate topic for the event, say: “Oh, I don’t think we should talk about that now… how about another day?” Then change the subject or leave the room.
- Do bring the host/ hostess a gift. A bottle of wine is always a welcome gesture, but don’t expect to drink that bottle. That’s up to the host. A gift certificate, or a voucher for dinner out can be a lovely idea. So is an amaryllis plant, scented candles, or a special Christmas ornament.
- Advise the host/hostess ahead of time if someone in your family or group has special dietary needs. Offer to bring a dish for that person. If that’s not possible, suggest the person do the best they can with what may be on offer, and perhaps consider eating beforehand if possible.
- Lend a hand when and if it makes sense. Helping to clear the table or keep the kitchen clean is usually welcome – but remember to take the lead from the hostess, say the Domestic Cleaning Professionals at MOLLY MAID.
- Be respectful of the time… and don’t over-stay your welcome. If the hostess keeps looking at the clock or offers you another cup of coffee, start gathering the members in your party and your belonging to prepare to say your goodbyes.