The Holidays present an unparalleled opportunity for biological and step families alike to strengthen, deepen, and solidify connections between family members. It is the time of year that you may choose to create the space in which you may have the opportunity to work on mending and improving relationships with different family members.
While some of you are challenged with ghosts of past years in the form of family members you are conflicted with, others celebrate the precious relationships they have nurtured. It is a time that many of you may welcome because of its spiritual/religious meaning, and because you take ‘mental inventory’ of your accomplishments over the past year. You may be however, one of those who dread this season because of failures they endured personally and/or professionally.
When you are remarried with children, the Holidays may present an added stress due to changing custody arrangements, resurfacing anger toward your former spouse, and a reminder of a failed marriage.
Here are some simple, practical tips to help you and yours turn this year’s Holidays more meaningful, memorable, and life altering experience.
- Be grateful for who and what you have in your life.
- Focus your step-family celebrations on fun-filled activities with your children.
- Create new traditions with your step-family.
- Establish, with your spouse, realistic expectations of your step-family members and festivities.
- Allow time for your step-children and biological children to transition between households.
- Plan, with your spouse, the budget, discipline methods, and couple time.
- Schedule self-care for ‘recharging your batteries’ during this hectic time.
- Envision your step-family’s desired holiday experience.
- Engage in a meaningful spiritual practice that you find enriching.
I sincerely hope that you make a proactive choice to use the tips during this Holiday season, I know it will make a difference internally and externally. I would love to hear your success stories as well as any frustrations you may encounter.