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7 Tips For Managing Christmas Stress And Your Visitors
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7 Tips for Managing Christmas Stress And Your Visitors

We all know that Christmas for many households is a stressful time of year, but in all the mayhem and preparations you should make time to devise strategies for managing Christmas stress so the entire holiday is not spoilt for you or anyone else. It’s sad to say, but stressful situations often arise from the arrival of visitors whether they come just for a meal or are staying in your house for days or a week. Through careful communication and planning you can minimise stressful situations for everyone.

Listed below are 7 tips for managing Christmas stress when you have visitors

1. Ask the family

Too often part of Christmas is spoilt because of poor communication between family members. Before your visitors arrive sit down and discuss with everyone (even young children) what they would like to do on each day. And if you have guests coming to stay, talk to them before they arrive about what they would like to do while they’re with you. That way people are less likely to be stressed by being expected to do something that may not be their taste.

2. Don’t try and be the perfect host.

Most people have a wish to be a good host, but you shouldn’t pile stress on yourself by trying to be the perfect host. Others will pick up your tension and an occasion that should be enjoyable won’t be.

3. Find out what visitors eat and drink

If someone is a regular visitor to your home, you may be very aware of any likes, dislikes or allergies around food, but it’s always worth checking. It’s much easier to adapt planned meals before you cook them, than find you’ve served something that someone can’t or won’t eat and embarrass them or yourself.

4. Accept help

If you have visitors who make offers to help, either by bringing food or drink or they offer to do various jobs when they’re staying, accept their help. Too many people try and do it all themselves, hurting the people who have offered and wearing themselves out in the process. People may not necessarily do things your way, but just accept their help with thanks.

5. Spend time with your visitors

Okay , it may be you have visitors that make you want to stay shut in the kitchen all day, but that won’t make them feel very welcome. Plan simpler meals, so that you have time to spend with your guests or get everyone to help so you can talk while preparing food.

6. Plan activities outside of the home

At Christmas arguments often arise over the silliest things exacerbated by kids or adults being over excited, drinking too much or feeling the strain of having to spend a far longer period of time with friends or relatives than you normally would.. Even if people are only coming over for a few hours, plan something outside of the house even if it’s only a brisk walk. If you have visitors staying over several days you definitely want to spend some time away from each other. Remember they might appreciate a break as much as you.

7. Have a stress buster ready to use

Stress busters are anything that will relieve your tension. This might be a stress buster for yourself – make time to have a relaxing bath, or half an hour reading a book or have a stress buster activity for other people. If the atmosphere seems to be getting a little tense, run a quiz, play a board game, watch a film, go out for a walk... It doesn’t really matter what you do. Just have something that you can use if you feel stress levels are rising.


Even the most loving of families can suddenly find at Christmas that having visitors can cause them a great deal of stress. Christmas is supposed to be a fun time, but it isn’t if people don’t get on. Unless you live alone, if you’re having guests during the holidays, make sure that you have a sit down discussion with every member of the household so they have the chance to say what they think – including the children. And don’t forget to talk to your guests either. Of course you don’t want to feel that everything is so rigid that you feel even more stressed, but by communicating well and listening to other people's views and choices, you can certainly minimise the chances of Christmas being spoiled by arguments or petty squabbles.

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