Christmas can be one of the most stressful times of the year for couples. Between deciding which family to spend Christmas with, how much to spend on gifts, who is doing what part of the cooking, and busy work schedules, your marriage relationship can begin to suffer.
Couples end up spending less time together. When they are together, they are focused on making decisions or engaged in Christmas activities. Many times a harmful and destructive negative pattern of interacting begins to develop. Before long spouses are considering if they really love each other any more.
Christmas Survival Plan
We recommend each spouse develops a Christmas Survival Plan before the holidays. Making decisions before the holidays about how you will handle yourself during the holidays will help you make it through the holidays with less stress. Here are some of our suggestions
- Remember The Reason For The Season – Make Christ a priority this Christmas. Create space in your life for prayer, read advent scriptures, and worship in a community of believers.
- Time Together – Make time together a priority. Schedule times during the day or date nights together. Be intentional about moving toward each other through the holiday season.
- Relieve Stress – Be your spouse’s stress relief. Let your spouse know how to relieve your stress. Pamper, massage, protect and love on each other.
- Appreciate Your Spouse – Send your spouse texts or call them in the middle of the day with a brief note of something you appreciate about them. Build appreciation in your heart for your spouse. Remember the good about your spouse even though your last interaction may not have been positive.
- Set Boundaries – Make decisions about your diet, alcohol consumption, social interactions, etc., well before the holidays arrive. Decide when you will indulge and when you will refrain. If there is someone in your world that you do not want to spend Christmas with, decide if you will tolerate that person within boundaries or if you will not be in the same room with them.
- Follow The Budget – Work with your spouse to set a budget for Christmas, including gift purchases, food, decorations and outings. Take responsibility to communicate budget updates along the way. Keep your budget commitments even if your spouse does not.
What do you have to say?
We love to hear from readers. Do you find that Christmas is an especially stressful time of the year? What is helpful for you and your spouse to survive the holidays? Have you ever tried any of these suggestions? What other suggestions you would add to this article? Do you know someone you need to forward this article to?
This article was written by Roy and Devra Wooten, authors of “The Secret to a Lifetime Love”. Learn more at www.LifeTogetherForever.com © Roy and Devra Wooten 2016. All Rights Reserved. You may replicate this article as long as it is provided free to recipients and includes appropriate attribution. Written permission for other use may be obtained at Secret@LifeTogetherForever.com.