If you think you’re mindful, go to a family reunion, says Google’s mindfulness mentor, Chade Meng-Tan. The stress and tension can put our skills to the test.
Meng shares 3 tips to stay sane over the holidays:
1) Self honesty: Acknowledge to yourself, this is hard. Even people with 10,000 hours of meditation practice find themselves ruminating over fights with relatives, replaying past hurts in their minds, and trying not to get caught up in their triggers. Knowing this, don’t give yourself too much blame.
2) Practice loving-kindness: Look at everyone in the room, and no matter how difficult your relationship may be, just think to yourself, “I wish for this person to be happy, I wish for my mother-in-law to be happy.” This thought sets an intention and causes a warmth of heart and it goes a long way to reducing negativity and stress.
3) Awareness of mortality: You begin to see a situation differently when you think about the fact that you have a limited amount of time with someone. If mom was to die tomorrow, how would you feel today? You’d want to give her all your time and love. You begin to see the person differently, and the situation differently. Most importantly, you begin to feel differently.