In my last blog (click here if you haven’t already read it) I talked about some of the reasons why family tensions may rise during the Christmas period. I also know that the list is probably inexhaustible because we all have different experiences.

In this blog I want to discuss the signs that you are feeling under pressure or that family tensions are rising, and to follow this next week I will be talking about how to avoid tensions and frustrations at Christmas.

So, here are some of the signs that tensions may be rising:

Limited Communication: Some people, when under pressure, pull back and are unable to communicate at the level you are used to. 

Unusual comments are made: When people are stressed they often say things they don’t mean or, conversely, they verbalise feelings that they have been bottling up for a long time.

High Expectations from others: When tensions are high family members may expect a certain level of behaviour or response which is above their normal expectations at other times of year.

Over indulgence: When we are stressed we are more likely to over indulge in the use of alcohol, food or drugs in order to bring the stress levels down.

Other changes in behaviour: When tensions are high and people are stressed they can often act differently to normal, for example they may lose their temper more frequently, seem frustrated or agitated or withdraw completely. People can find it difficult to relax and feel the need to take control of everything. 

I am sure you can recognise a lot of these signs, maybe you have experienced them yourself? Sometimes we can recognise these things happening and make adjustments to combat them but when you throw in the added pressure that Christmas provides it can make these feelings even more challenging to deal with, and if you have underlying resentment or anger, it can be a very difficult time of year.

Now I have outlined some of the causes and signs of high tension (and I would love to hear about anything you have experienced that may not be mentioned here), in my next blog I will address ways you can avoid tense feelings and situations. 

TIP: If you start to recognise anything mentioned here in yourself it may be worth having a chat to a professional coach such as myself in order to get a handle on how you are feeling and why. If you recognise these things in others, allow them the space to express themselves without taking it personally, you could also recommend they speak to someone if you think they would be open to it, but don’t push, it has to be their decision. 

If any of the things mentioned here have resonated with you and you would like to know more about how I can help you overcome the stresses and tensions Christmas brings book a free session here

In the meantime keep in touch!

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